Hillary Clinton made it official today: In a video for the Human Rights Campaign, the former secretary of state announced her support for same-sex marriage.
As secretary of state, Clinton was a champion for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT) around the world. On International Human Rights Day in 2011, she delivered a blunt yet inspiring speech in Geneva with the memorable line, “[G]ay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights.” Earlier in 2011, Clinton gave a nod to the marriage-equality law in New York State. But now that she is out of Foggy Bottom, Clinton can be clear about where she stands on major issues. As Perry Bacon of The Grio just pointed out on MSNBC, this is her first public comment on anything since leaving her post last month. That it was on same-sex marriage is significant.
Look at any survey and Clinton’s name leads the Democratic pack for the 2016 presidential nomination. Never mind that she hasn’t said one word about her political plans. But her public pronouncement places her in the forefront of her party. The two other talked-about contenders for 2016 are New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley. Both men were intimately involved in the efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in their respective states.
In short, supporting the right of loving and committed same-sex couples to marry is the only acceptable position to have if you want to be the presidential nominee of the Democratic Party. But even if Clinton doesn’t run, her support for marriage equality is valuable and needed. As the LGBT community continues its push for full equality, every little bit helps.
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