Monday, January 12, 2009
President-elect Obama has invited Rev. V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, who was elected the Episcopal Church’s first openly gay bishop in 2003, to deliver the invocation for this coming Sunday’s kickoff inaugural event on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, the Presidential Inaugural Committee announced today.
Obama is scheduled to attend the afternoon event, which is free and open to the public.
While the invitation of Rev. V. Gene Robinson is seen a positive step following the disasterous news that Mr. Obama had personally invited Rick Warren, the antigay, pro-Proposition 8, evangelical pastor to deliver the invocation at the swearing-in ceremony, some are wondering why Mr. Obama didn’t ask the Rev. V. Gene Robinson to deliver the invocation at the swearing-in ceremony instead of Rick Warren and thus avoid the furor that has become his biggest clash with the Democratic party’s left wing since he was elected?
Sources tell From the Left that President-elect Obama was aware of the outcry over the Rick Warren invitation, especially from his loyal LGBT base. I think if Mr. Obama had it to do it all over again, he would look elsewhere for a person to perform the invocation. But let this unfortunate misstep stand as a lesson to the progressive community: we must remain vigilant in the coming weeks and months. We need to make certain that our agenda is also Mr. Obama’s agenda.