How Much Can We Read Into Joe Biden Saying He's Comfortable With Gay Marriage?S

Everyone's favorite wacky-uncle-slash-Vice-President did something very interesting today. He went on Meet the Press and said this about gay marriage:

Look, I just think that the good news is that as more and more Americans come to understand what this is all about, it's a simple proposition: Who do you love? Who do you love? And will you be loyal to the person you love? And that's what people are finding out, is what all marriages at their root are about, whether they're marriages of lesbians or gay men or heterosexuals. [...] I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties.

Raise your hand if Joe Biden talking in hushed tones about love kind of makes you misty eyed... Anyway, while it's always nice to know what's on Joe's mind—and, let's face it, we very rarely don't know what's on his mind, since his mouth-filter is a little leaky—it's hard to know how much hope we can take from this statement.

On the one hand, he hasn't said anything new policy-wise, so it can't be viewed as an outright shift by the administration. But when asked directly by David Gregory whether it was going to happen, Biden said, "I can't speak to that. I don't know the answer to that." Does that, taken with the personal terms in which he spoke about the issue, mean he's trying to send some kind of secret signal—a kind of dog whistle, if you will—to supporters of marriage equality? Is it a coded message that we'll see some action on it during the second term? Or is this another one of Biden's off-script blabs which cause panic attacks to spread like wildfire through the White House? Hmm, it could genuinely be either—and it could be years until we know what the hell he meant. In the immortal words of the Backstreet Boys, "Quit playin' games with our heart, Mr. Vice President."

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Biden 'absolutely comfortable' with gay marriage [LA Times]