Main | Monday, May 09, 2011

Gay Money Key To Obama 2012

Over at Politico, Ben Smith reports that Obama's 2012 reelection effort is depending on the renewed generosity of the gays.
Pleased by an all-out White House push to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” gay donors have surprised campaign officials with the extent of their support. And the campaign’s new fundraising apparatus appears designed to capitalize on their enthusiasm: Obama’s finance committee included one gay man in 2008; there are 15 this year, a source said. The Obama campaign finance director, Rufus Gifford, was a top California gay fundraiser; the DNC finance chairman, Andrew Tobias, is gay; and the White House social secretary – traditionally a key, if unofficial, fundraising job – is also a gay man, Jeremy Bernard.

The spur for the gay community becoming an anchor for Obama’s re-election fundraising is a series of policy shifts in 2010. After a year of rocky relations and suspicion from Obama’s gay supporters that he wasn’t really committed to their issues, the last year saw a surge in activity. Along with the high-profile repeal of the military ban, Obama’s Justice Department recently refused to defend the Defense of Marriage Act. And the administration has taken smaller steps, like gay partner hospital visits and hate crimes legislation, concrete and important gestures that simply weren’t made during the Bush administration.
Activist David Mixner says that the last few months have seen a "sea change" in the way gays view the president.

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