Zach Wahls waves after addressing the Democratic National Convention… (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated…)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A young man who is the son of two lesbians lauded President Obama on Thursday for supporting his parents’ marriage and blasted GOP nominee Mitt Romney for suggesting that his family was not legitimate.
“Gov. Romney says he's against same-sex marriage because every child deserves a mother and a father. I think every child deserves a family as loving and committed as mine,” Zach Wahl told thousands of cheering delegates and guests at the Democratic National Convention. “Because the sense of family comes from the commitment we make to each other to work through the hard times so we can enjoy the good ones. It comes from the love that binds us; that's what makes a family.”
“Mr. Romney, my family is just as real as yours,” said the 21-year-old Iowa City resident.
Wahl became a national spokesman on same-sex marriage in 2011, when video of his testimony before an Iowa legislative committee went viral. Wahl spoke after a video about Obama’s support for gay rights, and described his family and upbringing as traditional.
“People always want to know what it's like having lesbian parents. I'll let you in on a secret: I'm awesome at putting the seat down. Otherwise, we're like any other family,” said the former Boy Scout and sixth-generation Iowan. “We eat dinner, we go to church, we have chores.”
Wahl said that while he respected that people of faith have different views on marriage, he grew frustrated and confused while watching the Republican National Convention in 2004: “Why didn't they think my family was a real family?”
Obama’s public support of same-sex marriage, which he announced earlier this year, showed true leadership and a willingness to put principle over politics, Wahl said.
“President Obama put his political future on the line to do what was right,” he concluded. “Without his leadership, we wouldn't be here. President Obama is fighting for our families, all our families. And he has our backs. Ladies and gentlemen, we have his.”