Equality Matters

Fox Still Promoting Bogus “Double Standard” On Obama’s Opposition To Same-Sex Marriage

February 22, 2012 5:53 pm ET - by Carlos Maza

Fox News hasn’t been thrilled with the media’s coverage of GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum’s anti-gay positions and rhetoric.

Earlier this year, Fox criticized mainstream media outlets for allegedly focusing on Santorum’s opposition to same-sex marriage while ignoring President Obama’s own refusal to support marriage equality. Now that Santorum appears to be among the current GOP frontrunners, Fox has resumed blaming news outlets for bringing up his anti-gay history.

Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade led a discussion Wednesday about the media’s alleged “double standard when it comes to social issues”:

The claim that Obama hasn’t received “backlash” for his opposition to marriage equality is false. Ever since the president announced in October 2010 that his position on same-sex marriage was “evolv [ing],” he’s been grilled by mainstream and progressive media outlets alike for his unwillingness to fully embrace marriage equality. MSNBC and CNN hosted a variety of gay activists who urged Obama to “get on with it” and criticized him for “push[ing] the snooze button” on gay marriage. White House press secretary Jay Carney is consistently asked about Obama’s failure to endorse marriage equality, recently being forced to explain how the president’s position differs from Santorum’s.

Moreover, the claim that -- as one Fox guest put it -- Santorum “believes exactly the same thing” Obama believes in terms of same-sex issues is also false. While both agree that the institute of marriage should be reserved for heterosexual couples, similarities end there:

Obama and Santorum are even more deeply divided when it comes to other issues like open service in the military, employment non-discrimination, and hate crime laws.

In other words, counter to Fox’s claim, Santorum’s anti-gay politics go well above and beyond Obama’s stated personal opposition to same-sex marriage. Now that he seems to be leading the GOP pack, Santorum should expect to come under more media scrutiny for his history of opposing LGBT equality. 


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