On today's edition of The Daily Rundown, MSNBC's Chuck Todd sat down to chat with Rev. Jesse Jackson to discuss a variety of issues, from Afghanistan to whether the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is fair game for Republicans to attack President Obama. In the middle of the interview, Todd asked the former Democratic presidential candidate about the NAACP Board of Directors's "historic" decision over the weekend to give the organization's stamp of approval to same-sex marriage.
"There has been this conventional wisdom that particularly among older African-Americans that the president's position on gay marriage is going to hurt him," Todd noted, adding, "Does the NAACP sort of backing up the president on this help convince the older African-American [voters], might be a little more religious, might be struggling with this issue, to ignore that part?"
Jackson answered by saying that "equality under the law is not a matter of faith, it's a matter of law." "We live in our faith, whatever that may be, we live under the law. So under equality under the law, you cannot be discriminated against based upon your race or your gender or your sexual preference," Jackson added.
Is Jackson, a Christian minister, suggesting that the God of the Bible is inequitable, seeing as Christian Scripture clearly teaches that God designed marriage to be between a man and a woman? Todd didn't press Jackson on the theological implications of his suggesting that the definition of marriage must be expanded to include same-sex unions otherwise the law would be discriminatory.
But on a more secular level, Todd failed to ask a more pressing follow-up question of Jesse "count all the votes" Jackson: Will the NAACP board of directors allow the organization's general membership to vote up or down on the resolution at its general convention, which is scheduled for July 7-12 in Houston. If the answer to that were in the negative, Todd could have further followed up with, "why not?"
Of course, doing so would only highlight the ongoing tension within the generally-liberal, but largely religiously conservative African-American Democratic voting bloc, something the "lean forward" narrative writers at MSNBC may desperately wish to avoid this reelection year.