Is President Obama gay? No, but Newsweek dubbed him ‘The First Gay President’ on their recent cover, acknowledging his recent statements in an interview that confirm his support for marriage equality. The newly released cover of their current issue pictures the President below a rainbow halo, which is supposed to shock readers.
Tina Brown, an editor of Newsweek and its sister website The Daily Beast, is known for her controversial covers meant to increase public interest and sales for the magazine.
The cover article, ‘The First Gay President,’ was written by the news magazine’s staff writer Andrew Sullivan. As an openly gay and conservative man, Sullivan seemed fitting to write the article.
‘When you step back a little and assess the record of Obama on gay rights, you see, in fact, that this was not an aberration. It was an inevitable culmination of three years of work,’ Mr Sullivan said in a statement about the article.
‘He had to discover his black identity and then reconcile it with his white family, just as gays discover their homosexual identity and then have to reconcile it with their heterosexual family,’ he wrote, describing the similarities between Mr Obama and the gay community.
Newsweek captured the historical moment in the article, which confirmed what many already believed, that the President supports gay marriage. However, this was the first time in history that a sitting President has openly backed gay marriage. Newsweek asserts that his statement in the recent interview was carefully planned out, yet some believe that his support was simply a way to gain voters in the upcoming election.
‘It’s easy to write off President Obama’s announcement of his support for gay marriage as a political ploy during an election year. But don’t believe the cynics,’ representatives from the news magazine told Politico in a statement about the article.
The President’s announcement came quickly after Vice President Joe Biden said that he was ‘absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women and men and women marrying are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties.’
Some think that the Vice President overstepped his boundaries by giving his official opinion before President Obama declared his, and was even criticized by some of the White House administration. The Vice President apologized to the President for his poor judgement in a private meeting on the day of the President’s interview.
‘Would I have preferred to have done this in my own way, in my own terms, without I think, there being a lot of notice to everybody? Sure,’ Mr Obama said in the ABC interview. ‘But all’s well that ends well.’
Yet some Republicans still think that the President only declared his support in an effort to attain more popularity among liberal voters in the lead up to the general election.
‘While President Obama has played politics on this issue, the Republican Party and our presumptive nominee Mitt Romney have been clear,’ Republican national committee chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement.
‘We support maintaining marriage between one man and one woman and would oppose any attempts to change that.’
Last week in a commencement speech to the graduates of LIberty University, an evangelical school in Virginia, Romney restated his opposition to gay marriage, describing marriage as an ‘enduring institution’ that should remain ‘a relationship between one man and one woman.’