Patterico's Pontifications


The Questionnaires

Filed under: — Patterico @ 6:59 pm

I started to include a long discussion of his questionnaires in the post, but it was just too much, so I am putting it on this page.

When Obama mentions “the old questionnaire” I think it’s worth revisiting the two questionnaires he answered in the early 1990s on this topic.

First, in 1996, he said plainly that he was in favor of same-sex marriage. You can see the questionnaire yourself here; here is a screenshot of the answer above Obama’s signature:

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 6.11.52 PM

White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer lied and said that someone else had filled out that questionnaire:

GRAY: In a 1996 Illinois Senate Race questionnaire, Barack Obama wrote, ‘I favor legalizing same sex marriages.’ After the Proposition 8 decision came out in California, David Axelrod said, ‘the President does oppose same sex marriage.’ So it seems like his position has actually evolved from being more supportive of civil rights to being less supportive of civil rights. Is the President going to evolve again and get back to supporting civil rights and gay marriage?

PFEIFFER: Well– a couple things on that. The President has –actually I think the best way to do this is I’m going to try to paraphrase an answer that the President gave.

GRAY: Well I’ve got his exact answer right here. ‘I favor legalizing same sex marriages and would fight efforts to prohibit them.’

PFEIFFER: Well if you actually go back and look, you’ll see that question–that questionnaire was actually filled out by some one else not the President. There’s been a long debate on this and–

That was a lie, and Pfeiffer knew it, and Obama knew it.

But the 1996 questionnaire is apparently not the “old questionnaire” that Obama was referring to today in the BuzzFeed interview. As you can see above, in that February 15, 1996 questionnaire, Obama said he was in favor of same-sex marriages. That doesn’t sound like a “struggle.” But in 1998, he answered “Undecided” to a questionnaire asking him if he was in favor of same-sex marriage. You can see that questionnaire here, and here is a screenshot:

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 6.23.53 PM

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