Atlanta's Mayor Insists He Didn't Flip-Flop on Marriage Equality

BY Lucas Grindley

January 10 2013 9:00 AM ET

Mayor Kasim Reed

The self-proclaimed judge of who is lying and who tells the truth, the PolitiFact website, is calling Atlanta's mayor a flip-flopper for changing his view on marriage equality.

Mayor Kasim Reed recently evolved his position from only supporting civil unions to signing a resolution that backed President Obama's position on marriage equality. For that, PolitiFact rated Reed a "Full Flop." And the mayor is not happy about it, calling on LGBT activists via his Facebook page and Twitter to complain, which they did in droves. Then his office released a lengthy, more than 900-word defense of Reed's record on LGBT equality.

But the verdict from Politifact seemed to account for most of what Reed's office points out and yet ruled against him.

"Certainly Reed’s position has shifted," PolitiFact wrote. "Some pundits have already labeled it a flip-flop. But we here at PolitiFact have learned that elected officials stake out their positions very carefully. Does his current stance count as a true flip?"

It went on to decide that yes, it's a flip, even though Reed never supported legislation barring gays and lesbians from getting married. In fact, Reed once tried to stop a ban from making it onto Georgia ballots.

"This LGBT-friendly track record could lead one to think that Reed’s move from civil unions to same-sex marriage was a subtle shift," PolitiFact wrote. "But in Atlanta politics, it’s pivotal."

The Human Rights Campaign in Atlanta was one of several activist groups to call out the column, printed in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It wrote on Twitter: "#ajc may call #kasimreed a flip flopper on #marriageequality - we call it courage! Thanks Mayor Reed for supporting equality."

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