Americans divided as Obama endorses gay marriage

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Americans are reacting with joy, scorn and indifference after President Barack Obama became the first sitting president to endorse equal marriage rights for same-sex couples.

Polls show Americans are evenly split on the issue. And Obama's comments Wednesday are resulting in many debating the human and societal implications of the statement — and the political fallout for Obama this election year.

Kate Varnum is one of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit that prompted the Iowa Supreme Court to make the state the first in the Midwest to legalize gay marriage in 2009. She says when she found out Obama gave his support for gay marriage, she was "absolutely thrilled."

But in Philadelphia, Bishop Leonard C. Goins said Obama's position would make him think twice about supporting the president's re-election.

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