President Obama Supports Same-Sex Marriage
President Obama made history Wednesday as the first President to come out in support of same-sex marriage. Video by nbc26.comvideo
President Obama made history Wednesday as the first President to come out in support of same-sex marriage.
"For me personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married," he said.
Experts say this promises to be a controversial campaign issue. Mitt Romney quickly responded Wednesday, saying he believes marriage should be between a man and a woman.
Many Wisconsin voters say the President's announcement is a game-changer when it comes to November's elections.
"I think coming out and saying that prior to the upcoming election in November and knowing the Republican party's stance on gay marriage and being so staunchly against it.. I think it's going to garner a lot of support.. particularly within the younger demographic," said Mike Gradus.
"Regardless of what people's opinions might be, I think it's a good thing that the President is addressing the issue now - especially with elections coming up. I think the more dialogue there is, the better it is for people to make more informed decisions," Mark Silva said.
Workers with the LGBT civil rights group Fair Wisconsin say they're proud of the President for taking a stance on such a divisive issue.
"It's a real issue that Americans all across this country are grappling with, and we're very excited to have the President's voice added to those who support full equality," said Fair Wisconsin Executive Director Katie Belanger.
Organizers with the grassroots organization Wisconsin Family Action say the President's views are "unfortunate" and nothing more than a "political move".
"The President, in taking this step, has basically said that he is showing a real disregard for what makes this country strong - which is married men and women and their families," said Wisconsin Family Action President Julaine Appling.
No matter which side of the debate you're on, experts say there's no doubt this will prove to be a major issue in this year's election.