President Barack Obama poses for a photo after honoring the 2012 National Association of Police Organizations TOP COPS award winners, Saturday, May 12, 2012, during a Rose Garden ceremony at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)
NEW YORK (AP) -- President Barack Obama is defending his personal view that gay couples should have the right to marry. The president says the country has never gone wrong when it has "expanded rights and responsibilities to everybody."
The president was raising money before an audience of gay and lesbian supporters in New York. His comments at the fundraiser were his first to such an audience since he announced last week his personal support for gay marriage.
Obama said expanding rights for all people doesn't weaken families -- it strengthens families.
The president told his supporters that he still believes in them, and hopes they believe in him.
Obama's Republican opponent, Mitt Romney, says marriage is defined as being between a man and woman.