Working to restore traditional marriage isn't a distraction ...from the economy...from finding more jobs.
It is more important.
Sooner or later the economy will boom. We generally have a free market system. Once that rises and falls pretty much independently of what politicians do. Thankfully so. That is how we got a boom after a big tax increase (1990, 1993), and a bust after big tax cuts (2001, 2003).
But our culture matters. It matters what signals we teach our children.
It matters in what choices are made available and deemed "normal".
Politics is war by other than violent means.
There are many Republicans are social liberals advancing their agenda by putting taxes, spending, debt, etc. ahead of fighting for a strong nuclear family. Ahead of changing the poison on television.
Republicans are taking social conservatives for granted.
Just like on most important issues it is up to Democrats to fight against gay rights.