October 2, 2011
President Barack Obama delivers his remarks at the Human Rights
Campaigns 15th annual national dinner in Washington Saturday Oct. 1,
In a sharp rebuke of his Republican rivals, President
Barack Obama said anyone who wants to be commander in chief must support
the entire U.S. military, including gay service members.
combative Obama criticized GOP presidential candidates for staying
silent when the crowd at a recent debate booed a gay soldier who asked a
question of the contenders via videotape.
"You want to be
commander in chief? You can start by standing up for the men and women
who wear the uniform of the United States, even when it's not
politically convenient," Obama said during remarks at the annual dinner
of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights
Referencing the boos at the Sept. 22 Republican debate, he said: "We don't believe in standing silent when that happens."
touted his administration's efforts to repeal the military's ban on
openly gay service members, as well as his orders to the Justice
Department to stop enforcing a law defining marriage as between one man
and one woman.
But, as expected, Obama stopped short of
endorsing gay marriage, saying only that "every single American
deserves to be treated equally in the eyes of the law."