If we're to believe the White House's proffered narrative, Joe Biden's televised moment of solidarity for same-sex marriage on Sunday was unplanned, unscripted, and from-the-heart, randomly turning this into Gay Marriage Week and prompting President Obama himself to come clean on an issue that he had actually already made up his mind about, if just a bit sooner than he'd intended. For the record, I don't buy the White House's narrative for a hot second. If there is one thing at which President Obama really is quite adept, it's campaigning, and Team Obama has time and again demonstrated itself a well-oiled machine of carefully coordinated messaging. I'd wager that, in their quest to keep voters talking about anything, anything other than the economy, they sent Biden out to test the gay-marriage waters -- and if it went poorly, hey, it's just another Biden-gaffe!
So, besides creating a lot of buzz to assuage his hitherto unenergized hyper-liberal base (and, of course, we mustn't forget the youths yearning for their long-lost hero), the president raked in more than a million dollars yesterday:
After three years of political compromise on issues from health care reform to spending cuts, Obama delivered a surprise gift to what many of his core supporters view as the civil rights issue of the day, simply by saying what everyone assumed he believed. But the distinction between implying a change and saying it outright will more than symbolic in the crucial area of campaign fundraising. Already, gay donors, mostly men, reportedly constitute 1 in 6 of Obama’s top fundraisers known as bundlers. And in the first 90 minutes after the news broke Wednesday, the campaign received $1 million in spontaneous contributions, a Democrat told BuzzFeed.
“This is beyond unifying — it’s electrifying,” said Eugene Sepulveda, a former top bundler who withdrew to take a non-political job early this year. “This man stands for right, despite the political consequences.”
And for a class of disillusioned progressive mega-donors, many of them gay, the completion of Obama’s “evolution” is an invitation reason to return.
And what's more, as Mitt Romney is out hitting the campaign trail, this is a great distraction to get people to grill Mitt Romney on delicate social issues instead of allowing him to hammer President Obama on his dismal failures with our most pressing problems like, you know, unemployment, or our $15 trillion national debt. Exhibit A: In Colorado yesterday, after being asked about gay marriage, in-state tuition for illegal immigrants, and medical marijuana, Mitt Romney clearly started to lose a little patience (at the 2:15 mark): "Aren't there issues of significance that you'd like to talk about?"