GQ on Outing Gay Republicans

GayrepubsThe April issue of GQ features a major piece by Jake Tapper on Mike Rogers, the writer behind BlogActive, the blog responsible for outing gay Republican congressman Ed Schrock, then-RNC field director Dan Gurley, and others. Rogers has questioned the sexuality of Representative David Dreier as well as Ken Mehlman, Bush’s choice for chair of the RNC.

The article provides a history of the political gay smear tactic, a play-by-play of Rogers’ process, detailing phone calls, and a flat out denial by Steve Schmidt that Mehlman is gay.

“‘Ken Mehlman is not gay,’ insists Steve Schmidt, a senior official of the Bush campaign and a friend of Mehlman’s, who refers to Rogers as a ‘bottom dweller.'”

Some other quotes from the piece:

Barney Frank: “Remember, what these people are saying is we’re bad people. What’s being outed here is hypocrisy, not homosexuality.”

Andrew Sullivan: “I don’t think there’s any doubt that some people have put themselves in a very troubling position. But the right thing is to feel extremely sad and angry that these people, whoever they are, have not stood up for what’s right, and yet also feel sad and angry that other gay men are persecuting them. I mean, hypocrites have human rights, too.”

Dan Gurley: “What [Rogers] does is fundamentally wrong. Who is he to know or understand the personal journey a gay person makes?….I tell the people I want to tell and I don’t tell those I don’t. If someone has the balls to ask me if I’m gay, I have the balls to tell them….I think what [Rogers has] done is make those of us who are gay Republicans—and used to fighting—more resilient to be who we are. And he’s pushed a lot of other Republicans towards us, to support us.”

Finally, Tapper reports that Rogers was preparing, in February, to out a high-profile member of the Bush Cabinet (Spellings, Chao, Rice, or Norton?) as a lesbian. Rogers says that while his lawyers are telling him to proceed cautiously, he’s upbeat about the progress he’s making on that story. “I’ve been amazed at how many people who previously opposed what I was doing have now come around.”