Obama is looking to ride the zeitgeist:
The White House would not comment on whether Mr. Obama was ready to endorse same-sex marriage. But one Democratic strategist close to the White House, speaking only on the condition of anonymity, said some senior advisers "are looking at the tactics of how this might be done if the president chose to do it."And Representative Barney Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat who is gay, said in an interview that a top adviser to Mr. Obama, whom he would not name, asked him this year, "What would be the effect if he came out for same-sex marriage?""My own view is that I look at President Obama's record, he was probably inclined to think that same-sex marriage was legitimate, but as a candidate for president in 2008 that would have been an unwise thing to say," Mr. Frank said. "And I don't mean that he's being hypocritical. I mean that if you live in a democratic society, it is a mix of what you think the voters want and what you think is doable."
His politics are evolving more like it. I have no actual doubt that Obama supports marriage equality. His public demurrals are pure politics - and they have long troubled me. But if you see this presidency as one committed to "leading from behind", it all makes some kind of sense. It may be that by the end of his eight years, he will emerge as the most significant president for gay equality.But he will have presided over it, not led it. I think that's how he sees the presidency as a whole. As a national community organizer, whose job it is to guide, shape but follow.