Marriage Equality welcomes President Barack Obama’s support of marriage for same sex couples

10 May 2012

Barack Obama

In an interview yesterday with ABC News, US President Barack Obama announced his support for equal marriage rights for same sex couples. The President, who until yesterday had said only that his views on the issue were "evolving", had previously instructed lawyers for the State to drop their defence of the so called 'Defense of Marriage' Act, which is a legal barrier to marriage equality at a federal level in the U.S.

"We are delighted to hear President Obama personally come out in support of marriage equality for same sex couples in the United States," said Moninne Griffith, Director of Marriage Equality. "Yesterday's announcement is wonderful news for couples across the US who want the freedom to choose to marry the person they love, and have their relationships recognised and protected on an equal footing to heterosexual couples."

"We have seen very strong levels of support for marriage equality in Ireland in the past few months," added Ms Griffith. "Popular support stands at 73%, and all political parties have committed themselves to marriage equality in some shape or form, including the Government's promise to look at the provision of same sex marriage in the upcoming Constitutional Convention. We are therefore calling on our Taoiseach Enda Kenny to join world leaders such as Obama, UK Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Francois Hollande to express his support for marriage equality. Party leaders such as Micheál Martin, Eamon Gilmore and Gerry Adams are all on record with their support. We are looking for political leadership from our Taoiseach on this issue of huge social significance to make sure the marriage ban for same sex couples is removed, and the Government commits itself to equality for same sex couples, our families and our children."

To watch President Obama's interview with ABC News, please click here.