Things have really changed since 2004. In the 2004 election, the Bush campaign used homophobia to get out the vote by putting all those propositions opposing gay marriage on the ballots. Now we appear to be rapidly approaching a tipping point where discrimination against homosexuals is as frowned upon as discrimination based upon race. That doesn’t mean it will go away, but it will no longer be possible to base legislation on such discrimination.
In 2004 the unpopularity of same sex marriage may have doomed John Kerry’s campaign. By the summer of 2010 we had the first major poll showing a majority supporting same sex marriage at 52 percent. Other polls show a smaller number, but it will continue to grow. After the passage of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, ” Barack Obama spoke of how his views on the subject are “evolving.” Now Joe Biden says that gay marriage is “inevitable.”
My bet is that Barack Obama will be the last Democratic candidate for president who doesn’t support legalization of same sex marriage–assuming it even remains illegal outside of the repressive GOP-belt by the end of Obama’s second term.