While it certainly appears that Texas Gov. Rick Perry has staked out a moderate position when it comes to same-sex marriage — he apparently considers it to be a states'-rights issue and has no problem with New York's recent legalization of gay marriage — his actions say otherwise.
The American Prospect columnist Adam Serwer writes that Perry's prayer event on Aug. 6 is being held by the American Family Association, one of the most anti-gay groups in the country, and considered a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
If Perry gets into the race, this kind of positioning could blunt the growing distaste for anti-gay discrimination among American voters. In a general election, it could make him more palatable to those with conservative views who aren't willing to countenance anti-gay bigotry. One could argue that, although President Barack Obama's position on same-sex marriage is "evolving," that absent the Tenth Amendment argument, Obama's stated position on marriage equality is only somewhat to the left of Perry's. In the aftermath of the passage of New York's marriage-equality law, Obama said that "each community is going to be different, and each state's going to be different."
If Perry considers a serious run for office, he should state his position clearly. Same-sex marriage is an important issue for voters, as Serwer points out.
Read Adam Sewer's entire column at the American Prospect.