President Barack Obama says that it’s past time for the Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters, to admit women.
Speaking to reporters on Thursday, White House spokesman Jay Carney said that the president told him “women should be admitted” to the all-male club.
“I happened to have a discussion with him about this so I know that’s his answer. … It’s obviously up to the club to decided but his personal opinion is that women should be admitted to the club.”
“We’re kind of long past the time when women should be excluded from anything,” Carney added, according to USA Today.
For years, the exclusive club has made a practice of offering an invitation to IBM’s CEO, which sponsors the Masters tournament. But on Tuesday, Augusta chairman Billy Payne refused to say if they would break from nearly 80 years of tradition to invite Ginni Rometty, IBM’s first female CEO.
“Whenever that question is asked, all issues of membership are now and have been historically subject to the private deliberations of the members,” Payne said.
The private club does not reveal its list of members, but there are thought to be around 300. It was not until 1990 that Augusta invited businessman Ron Townsend to become the first black member.
Watch the video below from The Associated Press, broadcast April 5, 2012.