Tina Brown, Newsweek Editor-In-Chief, Discusses Magazine's 'First Gay President' Cover (VIDEO)

05/17/2012 08:22 am ET | Updated Oct 18, 2012

On Wednesday, The Huffington Post spoke with Newsweek editor-in-chief Tina Brown about the magazine's latest cover image, which features President Barack Obama donning a rainbow-colored halo and the headline "THE FIRST GAY PRESIDENT." The cover story, written by Andrew Sullivan, focuses on Obama's recent endorsement of same-sex marriage.

Brown spoke to us during yet another HuffPost visit to New York's famed Loews Regency Hotel.

On Tuesday, Newsweek posted six alternative covers on its Tumblr that were considered for the current issue. We asked Brown why the chosen cover made the cut:

"I thought it was the simplest," she said. "It communicated the idea in a very kind of smart but at the same time subtle way. Whereas, you know, you can somehow overdo it and it becomes a joke that kind of gets out of hand. I thought this was a chic way of doing it honestly, I thought it did very well."

Brown explained that the final choice "was quite obviously the best" of the options. She went on to say, "you always have to start with the line. I tend to feel that unless you have the line right, you know, you can't create an image just out of nowhere. So, the line 'The First Gay President' was something Andrew Sullivan and I really loved, and we went from there." She called Obama's endorsement of gay marriage "a brave decision," "a great generational coup" and "a moment of moral clarity."

The media titan gave Vice President Joe Biden a healthy amount of credit for Obama's change of heart. Prior to the president's announcement, Biden appeared on NBC's "Meet the Press" and said that he was "absolutely comfortable" with same-sex marriage. Brown reasoned that Obama "stumbled into" the decision because of Biden's comments. She concluded, "The hero of the hour is Joe Biden, right? But I think once he [Obama] realized that this was a bus that was now moving, that he did grasp it and did the right thing."

Watch the interview above (video produced by Hunter Stuart)

Media coverage of Obama's gay marriage announcement

CONVERSATIONS