The president stressed that this is a personal position, and that he still supports the concept of states' deciding the issue on their own.
A states' rights stance? Remember when that was racist? A growing chorus of progressives said that states' rights were racist: people like Chris Matthews, Al Sharpton, and even newspapers. So what is their opinion now that the President has brought up states' rights as his explanation for his same-sex marriage stance? Racist, still?
As for the explanation itself, it's a cop out:
I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.
It took him nearly four years for him to affirm what we all thought but presumed he lacked the courage to say until he felt the time was right politically. Even now, his hesitancy--the fact that he waited until after Joe Biden made his remark, after Ed Rendell called him out, and after North Carolina (home of the 2012 DNC convention) became the latest state to vote it down--suggests he was drawn into a corner. How often has he evoked states' rights in the past? Not often, if ever. And what makes same-sex marriage any different in this regard than, say, health care?
Democrats may try to pump this nervous non-action and obscure the fact that it doesn't change anything (at least policy-wise) for the gay community. We'll be monitoring to see what effect (if any) it will have on the President in the polls.
And we eagerly await when the definitely-not-hypocrites on the left play the race card against Obama for his sudden support for states' rights.