President Barack Obama on Friday said
he won't push for gay marriage if given a second term.
During a live interview with MTV inside
the White House, the president insisted the issue should be settled
by the states.
“First of all, I've been very clear
about my belief that same-sex couples have to be treated before the
eyes of the law the same way as heterosexual couples,” Obama said.
“I think that's the right thing to do.”
“But what I've also said is,
historically, marriages have been defined at the state level. And
there's a conversation going on … there's some states that are
still having the debate. And I think for us to try to legislate
federally into this is probably the wrong way to go.”
Obama added that he expects the Supreme
Court to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the 1996 law
which prohibits federal agencies from recognizing the legal marriages
of gay and lesbian couples.
He added that, if re-elected he would
“keep on pushing as hard as I can [on gay rights], but what's
really going to change this is the fact that young people, their
attitudes … are going to reflect the future instead of the past.”
The interview comes a day after Obama
endorsed three state referendums which would either legalize or
uphold marriage laws in Maine, Maryland and Washington state.