Syndicated columnist Pat Buchanan on Friday offered the harshest analysis to date on Barack Obama's flipflop regarding same-sex marriage this week.
"Social conservatives and the Evangelicals...are now singing 'Onward Christian Soldiers' and riding to the sound of the guns on this issue," Buchanan said on PBS's McLaughlin Group. "I think he’s put his presidency in peril" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
PAT BUCHANAN: Well, the congressional races, rural Democrats, conservative Democrats and others - take Claire McCaskill, take John Tester in Montana, take Tim Kaine in Virginia – will have to run away from the platform, John. I don’t know that he’s going to do that, but what Barack Obama has done is put his presidency at real risk. He has instantly solved the biggest problem Mitt Romney had which is how to energize and rally the social conservatives and the Evangelicals. They are now singing “Onward Christian Soldiers” and riding to the sound of the guns on this issue, John.
JOHN MCLAUGHLIN, HOST: So Romney has it?
BUCHANAN: Well, they’re really out and they’re energized John, but take a look what happened. North Carolina, Obama carried it. 61 percent of the vote in a record primary turnout voted for a ban on gay marriage and civil unions.
MCLAUGHLIN: This past week.
BUCHANAN: Yeah. You got Iowa out there, okay? Judges imposed it on Iowa, the Iowa voters threw the judges out. You got 30 states, John, who, and the point of it is, it’s going to rally Obama’s base, there’s no doubt about it. The gay rights groups and the militants and others contributing money, the George Clooney crowd.
But John, again, I think he’s put his presidency in peril.
Later in the segment, McLaughlin asked his panel, “Is President Obama’s support of gay marriage a net plus, a net minus, or neutral in terms of impact on his reelection?”
Buchanan ominously said, “He’s energized his base which is small, but he’s energized a gigantic base which is large, and he’s split his Party. It’s I think going to prove the greatest mistake he made in his election year. I think it could cost him the presidency.”