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NAACP Endorses Gay Marriage

Board equates sexual orientation, race protection under constitution
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted May 20, 2012 6:23 AM CDT
NAACP Endorses Gay Marriage
NAACP Chairman Roslyn Brock in Feb. 20, 2010. The NAACP board just formally endorsed support for same-sex marriage in a Miami meeting yesterday.   (AP Photo/Stephen Chernin)

The NAACP's board endorsed same-sex marriage last night, reports the New York Times, with only two of the group's 64 board members voting against the resolution in what's being seen as a resounding statement of principle, and simultaneous endorsement of President Obama's move to support gay marriage. "The mission of the NAACP has always been to ensure the political, social, and economic equality of all people," says NAACP chair Roslyn Brock in a statement. "We have and will oppose efforts to codify discrimination into law."

"[F]or certain people, it was a very long evolution and a very long process of reconciling their faith with this, and coming to a very civil rights understanding of marriage equality versus a theological understanding of marriage," said one former high-ranking member of the NAACP. Polls show that 36% of black Democrats support same-sex marriage, versus 61% of white Democrats, leading some analysts to worry Obama's support for same-sex marriage could cost him among black voters uncomfortable with gay marriage. "This proves that conventional wisdom is not true," says Julian Bond. (More NAACP stories.)

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