President Obama said Wednesday that he would not predict how the Supreme Court would rule on the issue of same sex marriage but that he hopes that couples are treated fairly and equally.
"I used to teach constitutional law and I think that there’s certainly a strong basis for determining that in fact in this age, given what we now know, given the changes that have been taking place in states around the country, that you know, same sex couples should be treated fairly and have the same rights to benefits and to being able to transfer property," Obama said in an interview with Univision taped at the White House. "All the rights and recognition that I think heterosexual couples do."
Obama last year became the first sitting U.S. president to endorse same-sex marriage. He opposes the Clinton-era Defense of Marriage Act, which bars the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage even for couples married under state law. He says the 1996 law that defines marriage as between only one man and one woman is unconstitutional and directed the Justice Department to stop defending the law in court.
"I have wrestled with this issue and thought long and hard about this issue last year," he said. "I’ve announced that it was my conclusion that allowing same sex couples to marry was the right thing to do. It was consistent with America’s tradition of treating everybody equally...Obviously, public opinion has shifted dramatically just over the last several years. And my hope is, is that we will come to the place where everybody, you know, is treated fairly, and treated the same."