During a town hall at the University of Tampa on Thursday, a student asked President Barack Obama what he plans to do for equality beyond his State of the Union pledge to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" policy.
The student, Hector Flores, asked the president about same-sex marriage in particular, to great applause from the other town hall attendees.
President Obama responded by reiterating his broad commitment to equality, and discussing his "hope" for the bill that would give equal benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
"We actually have an opportunity of passing a law that's been introduced in Congress right now and my hope is that this year we can get it done just for federal employees and federal workers," said Obama. "A lot of companies on their own, some of the best run companies, have adopted these practices. I think it's the right thing to do and it makes sense for us to take a leadership role in ensuring that people are treated the same."