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McCain and Obama Assume Their Positions on Gay Marriage

With a same-sex marriage ban on the ballot in Florida, John McCain and Barack Obama have staked out their positions on what could prove to be a consequential issue again this Fall. Both candidates have weighed in on the California ballot initiative that would override the state's supreme court ruling legalizing gay marriage: Obama opposes the ban, and McCain supports it.

The candidates characterize the measure differently. McCain calls the campaign to amend California's constitution an effort "to recognize marriage as a unique institution between a man and a woman." Conversely, Obama stated that he opposed "the divisive and discriminatory efforts to amend the California Constitution."

The San Francisco Chronicle explores the candidates' records on the issue. For that information,


Obama has said that marriage should be between a man and a woman, but that ultimately it is for the states to decide. He also supports civil unions (which are not completely kosher with everyone in the gay community). McCain also wants to leave it up to the states. He opposed a federal constitutional amendment, but backed a similar losing Arizona initiative that would have banned same-sex marriage and domestic partnerships.

While California will undoubtedly vote Obama, as the Chronicle points out, Florida is a toss up. Will positions on gay marriage once again be a national litmus test for the candidates? Could it make or break their chances to pick up Florida? Who do you think is on the right side of the debate this time around?

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