What a difference eight years make. There was hardly a mention of "protecting marriage" in Tampa. Oh sure, there were a few moments when speakers briefly mentioned "honoring marriage." Mike Huckster was the only one who went as far as accusing President Obama of trying to "redefine marriage." That was about it.
Contrast that with Charlotte where the Democrats can't stop talking about it! It seems like almost every speaker talks about the right to marry the person you love. Michelle Obama mentioned it three times in her amazing speech. In 2004 and 2008, the last thing the Dems wanted to talk about was marriage equality. Remember the Logo Presidential Forum where then-Senator Obama seemed agitated that his civil unions position didn't satisfy the gay audience? We'll see what he says in tonight's speech, but I feel sure he'll include a pointed reference to his support for our marriages.
Andrew Sullivan pointed out that anti-gay attack ads have been minimal this year and (badly) produced by outside groups. Check out these two commercials. In the first, produced by The Campaign for American Values, and currently running in North Carolina, two bad actors wake up to discover that President Obama is trying to force them to be gay, or something:
In the second, currently running in Minnesota, a real married couple speak from the heart about the importance of honoring love:
What a difference. The first is an awkward hack-job that looks like it was thrown together by some amateurs. The second is professionally done with solid production values.
The Democratic Party didn't decide to go all-out on marriage equality just because it's the right thing to do and Republicans didn't decide to downplay it because they've had a change of heart. Both were strategic decisions. We're winning and both parties know it.