Obama’s first scheduled event in New York is at 7 p.m. at the Democratic National Committee’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Gala at the Midtown Sheraton.
Actor Neil Patrick Harris will be hosting the sold-out $1,250-a-ticket dinner, which comes days ahead of Gay Pride Parade in New York City.
The event turns a spotlight on an issue that causes consternation for the gay community: Obama’s opposition to gay marriage.
LGBT advocacy groups, still awaiting action in the New York state Senate on a marriage equality bill, were hoping Obama would take a stand on the issue, but White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said on Thursday afternoon that the President plans to “mention” the pending marriage equality bill in the New York legislature, but won’t come out either for or against the legislation.
“I’m sure he will mention it and I think make the point that, as he always has, that he believes that this is something that states should be able to decide. And that’s one of the reasons, because of the — that the President believes that we should withdraw from our participation in DOMA cases, because he believed it was unconstitutional.”
Pressed further about whether he would take a position on the New York marriage bill, Carney said bluntly, “He’s not going to make any new declarations of a position. He’s simply going to address it.”
Following his second stop at fundraier with mostly Wall Street leaders, Obama will conclude the evening with an appearance at a fundraising performance of the popular Broadway musical “Sister Act,” hosted by Whoopi Goldberg, an Obama supporter and producer of the show.