Libs swoon uncontrollably in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1.

(The Hill) — President Obama on Wednesday endorsed gay marriage, becoming the first U.S. president to voice support for same sex couples to legally marry.

The announcement is a landmark for the gay rights movement, which has battled for decades to win legal recognition for same sex marriages.

Yes the sudden pivot by Obama in an election year on the explosive issue exposes his campaign’s risks, which could alienate some socially-conservative, independent voters who do not support the issue.

Obama’s admission his gay marriage stance comes days after Vice President Joe Biden said he was “absolutely comfortable” with gay marriage. Education secretary Arne Duncan also admitted earlier this week that he also supports gay marriage.

Update: More from WaPo.

“I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married,” Obama told Robin Roberts, in an interview to appear on ABC’s “Good Morning America” Thursday.

Obama went on to explain that he had “hesitated” on marriage because he thought same-sex unions would be “sufficient” in order to guarantee rights for couples such as hospital visitations. And he said he wanted to be “sensitive” to the fact that for many Americans, the word “marriage” evokes “very powerful positions, religious beliefs and so forth.”

ABC will air the interview on its evening news Wednesday night and on “Good Morning American” Thursday. In a brief special this afternoon, Roberts said that Obama invoked his daughters, and conversations over dinner in which they have said that some of their friends have gay parents.

Asked if he was forced into the announcement because of Biden’s remarks over the weekend, Roberts said that Obama laughed and explained that he and his aides had been engaged in the discussion for some time.

The president has been under intense pressure for his self-described “evolving” position on the issue since Sunday, when NBC aired an interview in which Vice President Biden said he was “absolutely comfortable” with gay marriage.

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