What a Surprise! Gay Marriage is a big deal in election year...
Analysis: Gay marriage back as campaign issue
By LIZ SIDOTI, Associated Press Writer Thu May 15, 6:47 PM ET
WASHINGTON - A California Supreme Court decision clearing the way for gay marriages in the state injects an element of uncertainty into a presidential race in which the Iraq war and the sputtering economy have largely overshadowed social issues.
John McCain, the GOP nominee-in-waiting whose position on the issue rankles the Republican Party's conservative base, sought to strike a delicate balance to the Thursday ruling.
He "supports the right of the people of California to recognize marriage as a unique institution sanctioning the union between a man and a woman, just as he did in his home state of Arizona," his campaign said in response. "John McCain doesn't believe judges should be making these decisions."
Like McCain, Democratic rivals
Hillary Rodham Clinton
say the marriage issue should be left to the states, and they, too, seemed to tread carefully.
"Barack Obama has always believed that same-sex couples should enjoy equal rights under the law, and he will continue to fight for civil unions as president. He respects the decision of the California Supreme Court, and continues to believe that states should make their own decisions when it comes to the issue of marriage," the Illinois senator's campaign said.
Clinton's campaign said she "believes that gay and lesbian couples in committed relationships should have the same rights and responsibilities as all Americans and believes that civil unions are the best way to achieve this goal. As president, Hillary Clinton will work to ensure same-sex couples have access to these rights and responsibilities at the federal level. She has said and continues to believe that the issue of marriage should be left to the states."