President Obama speaks at the Human Rights Campaign's dinner. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

Earlier that night, the president had sharp words for Republican hopefuls in his speech at the annual Human Rights Campaign gala in D.C. Obama made pointed reference to a recent GOP debate in which some audience members booed a gay soldier who asked a question via videotape. “You want to be commander in chief?” he said at the convention center dinner. “You can start by standing up for the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States, even when it’s not politically convenient.”

**Sunday, 7 p.m.: Read an updated story on the Human Rights Campaign dinner, with photos

Read more: Obama speaks at Human Rights Campaign dinner, 10/1/11