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04/16/2014

An inside look at POTUS's evolution circa 2011–2012

by Jeremy Hooper

Having been in and around conversations with people who had varying degrees of separation from the administration, the year or so leading up to President Obama's public stating of support for marriage equality remains one of the most fascinating times of my political life. Most everyone agreed that the big guy in charge was really with us, but there were so many opinions about when and how he would get there, often at great odds with one another, even among those with key insight. It was a frustrating puzzle, first and foremost, but it was also a very interesting time to do this kind of work. Everyone was searching for the keys to unlocking the public support that we knew would so powerfully change the game.

In a fascinating new piece, The New York Times' Jo Becker (who is also author of the forthcoming book, Forcing the Spring: Inside the Fight for Marriage Equality, form which this article is adapted) fleshes it all out, with many never-before-revealed details (Mehlman did all that? Really?). I suggest a full read:

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How the President Got to ‘I Do’ on Same-Sex Marriage [NYT]

***

**UPDATE: Andrew Sullivan, who truly was there from the beginning of this national push, takes great exception with Becker's article and book. I have to say that while I stand by what I wrote above about the fascinating 2011–2012 phase with which I had intimate involvement, I do agree with much of what Andrew writes as well (particularly about Evan Wolfson). I highly recommend reading his take too: Jo Becker’s Troubling Travesty Of Gay History [The Dish]

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