Also interesting was how the speakers framed the issue. Most used the libertarian frame, focused on keeping government out of people's private decisions. In several speeches, it was tied to the women's right to choose. As Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick put it, "We believe that freedom means keeping government out of our most private affairs, including out of a woman's decision whether to keep an unwanted pregnancy and everybody's decision about whom to marry." This is a particularly effective framing of the issue in places like Arkansas where a certain queasiness about "big government" persists.
However, First Lady Michelle Obama went a different, bolder direction in her framing of the issue, placing it in the context of the broader, historic battle for a more just America. Towards the close of her speech, Obama said: "...if proud Americans can be who they are and boldly stand at the altar with who they love…then surely, surely we can give everyone in this country a fair chance at that great American Dream."
Just as the relative (by recent GOP standards) quiet on the issue at last week's RNC, the full embrace by the Democrats shows how fast the issue is moving. Truly extraordinary.
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