Barack Obama | Election 2008 | Hillary Clinton | News

Clinton and Obama Jockey for Gay Vote on Eve of Super Tuesday


Hillary Clinton released a message to LGBT Americans on "Let me tell you what I have been telling voters across America. I am fully committed to the fair and equal treatment of LGBT Americans. For seven long years, the Bush Administration has tried to divide us - only seeing people who matter to them. It's been a government of the few, by the few, and for the few. And no community has been more invisible to this administration than the LGBT community. I will change that..."

Barack Obama released a list of 28 prominent former LGBT supporters of John Edwards now behind the Obama campaign, led by former Edwards political advisor Eric Stern and political strategist and fundraiser David Mixner. Said Stern, "It became clear to me personally that our committee had a vision for the role of the LGBT community that was similar to the role that LGBT supporters were already playing in the Obama campaign. It, like the Edwards Campaign, is a pure grassroots, activist-oriented operation…and it's clear that we will play a similar role in the Obama campaign."

The latest polls are showing a very tight race...

A Message to LGBT Americans: “I Want to be Your President” [ourchart]
Prominent LGBT Supporters of Senator Edwards Announce Support for Obama [obama 08]

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  1. Here's the message this GLBT hears:

    "Blah blah proud, blah blah proud, blah blah proud, no marriage for you, but vote for me anyway."

    We heard the same schtick from your pandering husband, lady. And what we got was DADT and a knife in our back when the cowardly lion couldn't spend any political capital to veto DOMA, instead signing it in the middle of the night in the middle on the weekend so it wouldn't make a news cycle.

    I hope you can hear the PROUD sound that my middle finger is making right now, Hillary.

    Posted by: JB | Feb 4, 2008 8:47:44 PM

  2. ranked from best to worst re: gay civil rights ---
    1) Gravel (the best even though he doesnt stand a chance)
    2) Obama (very good and genuine)
    3) Clinton (not bad but should not to be trusted)

    Posted by: jh | Feb 4, 2008 9:03:25 PM

  3. well, we voted for hillary ... this is a historic moment and hopefully obama and hillary will run together...

    Posted by: the queen | Feb 4, 2008 9:19:56 PM

  4. "Blah blah proud, blah blah proud, blah blah proud, no marriage for you, but vote for me anyway."

    We heard the same schtick from your pandering husband, lady. And what we got was DADT and a knife in our back when the cowardly lion couldn't spend any political capital to veto DOMA, instead signing it in the middle of the night in the middle on the weekend so it wouldn't make a news cycle.

    I hope you can hear the PROUD sound that my middle finger is making right now, Hillary.

    Yes, yes. Bravo. The Democrats aren't for equality. They want to use as political tools while tossing us meaningless token legislation like ENDA once in a while. But real equality? Forget it.

    Posted by: ThatLibertarianGuy | Feb 4, 2008 9:21:08 PM

  5. Both pics were air brushed BIG TIME!!!!


    Well, we know that the 1 thing they both have in common is the vain fear of showing us their wrinkles.


    At least both factions can unite on that

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | Feb 4, 2008 9:22:57 PM

  6. I remember sHillary being so dimissive and condescending to Mellisa Ethridge during the Logo gay debate. sHillary refused to aknowledge that her husband threw us under the bus with ENDA and gays in the military.

    I don't enough about Obama, but he seems to be pandering only for votes.

    One thing is certain: I am NOT giving any money to any candidate who will not be brave enought to be for gay marriage and more.

    Posted by: FunMe | Feb 4, 2008 9:25:03 PM

  7. And, goddamn, Girlfriend, just forget how Obama nakedly lied about sponsoring and passing the LGBT rights bill in Illinois because he was too busy running for the US Senate to drop by his day job and even sign the petition, and couldn't vote for it because he was gone to DC, and brags about wanting to repeal a meaningless section of DOMA while still personally supporting a state's right to legally deny us any kind of relationship or adoption rights and tells us that we should be happy, HAPPY, for Christ's sake that he's willing to ask the states to, pretty please, allow us civil unions, but, bitches, give up on that marriage thingy because his homies in the church OWN that word and have papers to prove it even though his own denomination supports gay marriage equality but he ignores that and why are you fuckers STILL giving him shit about poor Donnie McClurkin when all the man wanted to do was sing his song how was Obama supposed to know he'd get out there on the stage Obama paid for and start screaming and shouting and testifying about how God done saved him from being a 'Mo when Big O has been smile fucking you all for so long and so much by dropping the gay-word here and the gay-word there that his mouth is frozen open. How much more GENUINE can it get?????


    Posted by: Michael Bedwell | Feb 4, 2008 9:25:27 PM

  8. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice,shame on me! No Clinton will ever get my vote. Maybe I should tattoo the initials D.A.D.T on that middle finger before I stick it proudly in the air at Hillary.

    At least the Republicans don't lie and say they'll fight for us and then stab us in the back.

    Posted by: Danny | Feb 4, 2008 9:40:06 PM

  9. Interesting observations from Nov 15th debate:

    Thoughtful breakdown of candidates;

    before Edwards dropped out:

    and opinion afterwards:

    In my OPINION, Clinton is a deceitful, pandering, flip-flopping flounder. She deals in half-truths and slanderous allusions, so whatever she posts on her website isn't worth the effort to read. I will never believe that she does anything without some type of self gain. I mean damn, even her own MARRIAGE is a sham! I've had enough deceit to last me a lifetime, thank you very much. And maybe Obama isn't any better. But that's not what I see. I see someone with a healthy marriage and daughters who's futures remind him of much work needs to be done. I don't believe that any candidate has done all they said they would do once they got elected. So marching in gay parades and speaking at $500 a plate functions don't mean squat! Bush promised "no child left behind" and look what we got.

    Bottom line, folks should make up their own minds. I believe most people here can do that without being harassed with hollow points. This is way too important to rely on the "facts" of garrulous bullies.



    (recopied from a previous post)

    Posted by: soulbrotha | Feb 4, 2008 10:01:37 PM

  10. So Hillary Clinton takes the time to record a statement of support, and Barack "homophobes are good and moral people" Obama releases a list of "prominent GLBTs" who support him?


    Posted by: nuflux | Feb 4, 2008 10:04:06 PM

  11. God please get over the DADT sabotage from nearly 14 years ago. That was 14 years ago. 14 years before that gays were treated even worse than they were in 1994. It's now 2008. Hillary has come out and said it is a flawed policy that should be removed. As for Bill, who again is not the person running, it's hard to do much when there is a veto-proof majority in Congress ready to overturn your veto. Why waste political capital when you can't get the results you want?

    In any case, she has been very supportive of the GLBT community for years. I haven't seen anything to make me think that about Obama. In fact, some of his actions make me question his dedication to the GLBT pursuit for equality. Enjoy the talk talk talk. I prefer voting based on some record. Where's his?

    Posted by: Carrie B | Feb 4, 2008 10:36:32 PM

  12. Been meaning to say this for days now...Michael Bedwell, I *heart* you ;)
    I rarely have time to post, much less do so in such an eloquent and accurate manner. So, thank you for doing so. Carry on

    I'm pretty sick to death of this hard-on people have for O.2

    Posted by: silverskreen | Feb 4, 2008 10:46:21 PM

  13. @Carrie B

    Record? Yes - we have Clintons record. Eight years of one of the most corrupt and secretive administrations followed 6 years of senate doing wonderful and amazing things like trying to get woodstock museum funding added to a Health funding bill. Oh - and she voted for the war before she was against it. A No Child Left Behind? She voted that in to. Clintons time is done with. The only one who has a real chance at McCain is Obama.

    Posted by: yoshi | Feb 4, 2008 10:46:45 PM

  14. Hillary All The Way Baby! She learned from the mistakes in the past and she will bring the country together. We need the experience- Foreign Policy is a major issue. Hillary and Bill are loved overseas. My vote goes for Hillary!~ See you at the polls!

    Posted by: Fab | Feb 4, 2008 10:54:07 PM

  15. Been meaning to say this for days now... Michael Bedwell, you're an idiot.

    Posted by: Rob | Feb 4, 2008 10:57:28 PM

  16. Fab, you need to read more of the foreign press before making such a statement. The world is in LOVE with Obama, and find it outstanding that a man like him could be our next president. It seriously is already changed our world opinion abroad.
    And don't forget that George Bush had some of the most experienced foreign policy advisors of any administration (Rumsfield, Cheney, Wolfowitz, etc) and look what a mess that got us into!

    Posted by: Ted | Feb 4, 2008 11:04:26 PM

  17. Gays who vote for Clinton will get what they deserve. If we have not learned what it feels to be thrown under the bus, just you wait. Obama may not be perfect, but we won't move gays and lesbians to equality unless we have leaders willing to talk to about homophobia to other than all-gay audiences. Obama did that, for example, at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta on Martin Luther King Day weekend. Obama's appeal among independents and Clinton's limited appeal outside Democratic base suggests that Obama will be a more formidable opponent to John McCain. And winning in November should be a primary concern for gay voters as well.

    Posted by: Lavi Soloway | Feb 4, 2008 11:19:02 PM

  18. Obama has, on multiple occasions, brought up the issue of homophobia while addressing southern black audiences in churches. There are few places more "comfortably" homophobic than southern black churches and Obama is principled enough to criticize that during a presidential campaign. I simply can't think of an analogous showing of ideological commitment by Hillary Clinton. I don't need him to record a "personal message" to me - hearing him tell that to people even when he hopes to win their vote tells me enough about his support for gay rights.

    Posted by: kipp | Feb 4, 2008 11:29:30 PM

  19. In the early days of this presidential election it was rumored that one of the Democratic candidates refused to be photographed with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom due to the fact that he issued marriage licenses to GLBT citizens of San Francisco. Meanwhile, one of my best friends is an attorney in the S.F. City Attorneys Office who works closely with Gavin Newson. She informed me that Barack Obama was the candidate who did want to be photographed with Newsom. And lest you think that my friend was simply trying to smear Obama, she's actually volunteering for his campaign (she says his stance on marriage equality is the one thing about him that disappoints her).

    Posted by: peterparker | Feb 4, 2008 11:31:03 PM

  20. This post from PeterParker is exactly the type of smear tactics that needs to stop. "I heard from a friend who heard from a friend" is such a bullshit way to spread falsehoods. This isn't a school playground. And it surely isn't a way of convincing people to vote for Hillary.

    Posted by: John | Feb 4, 2008 11:41:20 PM

  21. LOS ANGELES - Openly gay City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl has endorsed Barack Obama for president, saying the Illinois Democrat is clearly the best candidate on issues of importance to the LGBT community.

    "Barack Obama is a leader of uncommon vision, great principle and deep conviction. He has a proven track record of standing up for LGBT civil rights," said Rosendahl, the highest-ranking gay official in the City of Los Angeles. "I am convinced he is the candidate who is most genuinely committed to fighting for our civil rights."

    Rosendahl, the first and only openly gay man elected to the Los Angeles City Council, joins West Hollywood Mayor John Duran and West Hollywood Mayor Pro Tempore Jeffrey Prang as Los Angeles-area local gay officials who have endorsed Obama.

    Rosendahl said he was impressed with Obama's track record on issues of importance to the LGBT community. He specifically noted the following:

    ·Obama supports the repeal of the entire federal Defense of Marriage Act, and has done so ever since he was a candidate for U.S. Senate in 2004.

    ·Obama has taken stronger positions on dismantling "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and on fully inclusive workplace protections, than any candidate in the presidential race.

    ·Obama is a strong supporter of every major piece of LGBT legislation in Congress today.

    ·Obama supports fair tax treatment for gay and lesbian couples.

    ·Obama supports equal immigration rights for gay and lesbian couples.

    ·Obama supports domestic partner benefits for federal workers.

    ·Obama, while in the Illinois Senate, sponsored a fully inclusive anti-discrimination law that included both sexual orientation and gender identity.

    ·Obama sponsored the Microbicide Development Act to fund research critical to combating HIV/AIDS in the United States and around the world.

    ·Obama spoke out on World AIDS Day to an audience of evangelical leaders at Saddleback Church, publicly disagreeing with the leaders in attendance who opposed condom distribution.

    ·Obama, in Illinois, worked to enact a law that authorizes licensed pharmacists to provide clean needles in small, controlled numbers, a reform that is credited with achieving dramatic declines in the spread of HIV among intravenous drug users.

    ·Obama, in the U.S. Senate, supported efforts to lift the ban on federal funding for regulated needle exchange programs that are proven to work in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

    ·Obama has continued to raise the issue of LGBT civil rights in forums and town halls nationwide. During a high-profile speech on Martin Luther King Jr. Day at King's Ebenezer Baptist Church, he challenged his audience to support gay and lesbian rights with the same fervor they brought to their own struggle for civil rights.

    "The more I have listened to Barack Obama," Rosendahl said, "the more convinced I have become that his commitment to our civil rights is deep and heartfelt. I am impressed that he continually raises the issue of gay civil rights, even in front of audiences hostile to our issues. I look forward to a Democratic administration that takes up our cause, instead of taking us for granted.

    "I strongly urge my fellow LGBT voters in California and across the country to vote for Barack Obama for President."

    Posted by: Kevin | Feb 4, 2008 11:43:47 PM

  22. And Bill is such a douchebag that his opinion I would not wipe my ass with. That said, I think more highly of Obama in spite of Rosendahl, yet voted for Hillary, yet will come around if the November opportunity presents itself

    Posted by: rick | Feb 5, 2008 12:00:35 AM

  23. Kevin

    Thank you for posting all of that.
    this part is very intresting

    "·Obama supports the repeal of the entire federal Defense of Marriage Act, and has done so ever since he was a candidate for U.S. Senate in 2004. "

    Hillary has publicly stated she is AGAINST fully repealing all parts of DOMA

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | Feb 5, 2008 12:14:03 AM

  24. Feb. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Democrat Hillary Clinton has raised more money from lobbyists than any other presidential candidate while Republican John McCain has more of them assisting his campaign.

    Clinton took in $823,087 from registered lobbyists and members of their firms in 2007 and the second-biggest recipient was McCain, who took in $416,321, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based group which tracks political giving. Barack Obama, Clinton's rival for the Democratic nomination, doesn't take money from registered lobbyists, although he received $86,282 from employees of firms that lobby, according to the center.

    McCain has 26 registered lobbyists as campaign advisers or fundraisers compared with 11 for Clinton and none for Obama, according to review of records compiled by Public Citizen, a Washington-based group that favors stronger disclosure laws for lobbyists.

    Even as they pledge to rein in special interests, the leading Democratic and Republican candidates are relying on lobbyists to bring in campaign cash by raising money from other donors, a technique known as bundling.

    ``These bundlers and advisers are central to the financial success of top presidential candidates,'' said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics. ``As such, they will essentially carry with them an IOU from the campaign.''

    Lobbyist Bundlers

    Clinton's total from lobbyists is a fraction of what they raise on her behalf; her campaign doesn't disclose which donations are brought in by lobbyist bundlers.

    Heather Podesta, a Washington lobbyist, donated $4,600 to Clinton, FEC records show. She's raised more than $250,000 for Clinton by tapping her network of contacts and holding fundraisers.

    ``Most of my attention is focused on raising money and new supporters,'' Podesta, sister-in-law to President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff John Podesta, said in an interview. ``That's the best way for me to make a contribution.''

    Like Podesta, former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Steve Ricchetti has also signed on to be a so-called Hillraiser. Ricchetti's firm was paid $1.7 million during the first six months of 2007 to lobby on behalf of Amgen Inc. and Sirius Satellite Radio, among others.

    Won't Be Swayed

    New York Senator Clinton, 60, said during a Jan. 21 debate that she won't be swayed by her support from lobbyists, saying she has ``withstood the full force of corporate lobbyists'' during her failed 1993 attempt at passing universal health care legislation as first lady and during her Senate career.

    ``I think I'm independent and tough enough to be able to deal with anybody,'' Clinton said.

    McCain, 71, an Arizona Republican who led the successful 2002 effort to ban corporate and union donations to the political parties, counts as campaign co-chairman former Representative Tom Loeffler of Texas. Loeffler now runs his own lobbying firm, which was paid $2.5 million by such clients as AT&T Inc. and Southwest Airlines.

    Last week, former Senator Phil Gramm of Texas, vice chairman of UBS Securities LLC who is registered to lobby for the bank, campaigned in Georgia for McCain.

    On the campaign trail, McCain stresses his anti-lobbyist bona fides.

    `Special Interests'

    ``I upset the special interests and Washington lobbyists when I fought for ethics reform and to stop union bosses and corporations from writing million-dollar checks to political campaigns,'' he said in New Hampshire in November.

    Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, 60, has contrasted his experience running a business and a state government with McCain's tenure in Washington, and has vowed to rein in the influence of lobbyists.

    Like former President Ronald Reagan, ``I'd go to Washington as an outsider -- not owing favors, not lobbyists on every elbow,'' Romney said at a Jan. 30 debate.

    And Romney, too, has registered lobbyists in campaign posts.

    Former U.S. Representative Vin Weber, whose firm was paid $3.6 million by such clients as EBay Inc. and General Dynamics Corp., is Romney's policy chairman. Other advisers include Ron Kaufman, chairman of Washington-based Dutko Worldwide, which was paid $11.2 million by such companies as Allstate Corp. and Target Corp.

    `Extra-Curricular Activities'

    ``Among my many extra-curricular activities, I love public policy,'' Weber said. ``I try to be helpful to candidates.''

    One campaign co-chairman for Illinois Senator Obama, 46, is former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, a policy adviser at Alston & Bird LLP. The firm was paid $4.1 million by companies such as Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. and Healthsouth Corp.

    Daschle isn't a registered lobbyist, yet has clout. ``Some of the most powerful people in Washington's influence industry aren't registered to lobby,'' Krumholz said.

    And while Obama doesn't accept lobbyists' money, he raised the $86,282 in cash from employees of firms whose business centers on lobbying. He takes in even more money from employees of law firms which also engage in lobbying, including $226,491 from those working for Sidley Austin LLP, his old law firm, which was paid $3.1 million to lobby by clients such as Caterpillar Inc. and United Parcel Service Inc.

    For the lobbyists, the return comes if their candidate wins, said Mary Boyle, a spokeswoman for Washington-based Common Cause, which supports stronger lobbying laws.

    ``They certainly would get access and influence if and when he or she become the next president,'' Boyle said.

    Posted by: soulbrotha | Feb 5, 2008 12:17:57 AM

  25. The man behind the curtain...

    ITEM: Sen. Obama told "The Advocate" that he "was a chief cosponsor of and then passed“ “the human rights ordinance in Illinois.”
    FACT: Nine months passed between the time the bill that passed was introduced in the Illinois legislature and state senator Obama becoming US Senator Obama yet he chose not sign on as a cosponsor of any kind nor was he even still a member of the legislature when that historic bill was voted on. To the contrary, his replacement Sen. Kwame Raoul became a cosponsor and voted for it. One less vote and it would have died, as did the three similar earlier bills that he did belatedly cosponsor after four years in the state legislature. Neither Equality Illinois nor "Windy City Times" mention any efforts on Obama’s part to even speak for it in their reports on the by-a-hair victory of the law they had been fighting for for over thirty years.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama repeatedly speaks of his ability to bring differing people together; specifically, he's spoken of his belief that "we can go after those folks and get them" meaning religion-driven opponents of LGBT equality.
    FACT: Rev. James Meeks is a close friend and spiritual consultant to Sen. Obama. Rev. Meeks appeared in TV ads for Obama’s US Senate campaign; Obama campaigned at his church; and went there for prayer the night he won that primary. Meeks was on his exploratory committee for the Presidency, and his church choir performed at a rally for Obama the night he announced. Rev. Meeks is also an Illinois state senator who has aggressively campaigned against gay rights and complained about "Hollywood Jews for bringing us ‘Brokeback Mountain’." He ran for governor on a platform centered upon being antiabortion and antigay. He calls being gay an "evil sickness," and his gigantic church is one of those which sponsors a Halloween fright night in which, according to the "Chicago Sun Times," among those "consigned to the flames of hell" were "two mincing young men wearing body glitter who were supposed to be homosexuals." His church has also launched antigay petition drives for the Illinois Family Institute, and Meeks is also aligned with Antigay Industry powerhouses Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, the Alliance Defense Fund, and Americans for Truth that proclaims "fighting AIDS without talking against homosexuality is like fighting lung cancer without talking against smoking." We do not know if Sen. Obama attempted to “go after him,” only that his close friend and advisor, the Rev. & Sen. James Meeks voted against LGBT equality in Illinois.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama asserts that, though both he and Sen. Clinton support federal benefits for gay couples, he is better than Sen. Clinton because he supports a "full repeal of DOMA," including that section referring to the states.
    FACT: Contrary to what countless people believe, Section 2 of DOMA is little more than a pat on the head for the states saying they can refuse legal recognition for same gender relationships if they choose, but it mandates nothing either way. If it did, we would not now have gay married couples in Massachusetts, legal domestic partnerships in California, DC, Maine, Oregon, and Washington state, and legal civil unions in Connecticut, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Vermont. Further, Section 2, is moot even symbolically as all but a few states have since passed their own versions and/or constitutional amendments.

    More important is that Sen. Obama supports a state’s right to legally ban such relationships regardless of DOMA. According to an August 11, 2007, ABC News online story: “Obama believes states should be under no obligation to recognize same-sex marriages from other states. He wants to fully repeal DOMA, however, because he views the statute as ‘ineffectual and redundant’, in the words of [Obama supporter and his former Constitutional law professor Lawrence] Tribe. Obama believes a long-recognized public policy exception to the Constitution’s Full Faith and Credit Clause exempts a state from having to recognize a same-sex marriage from another state which runs counter to its own public policies. ‘Marriage is not something that states have ever been obliged to recognize if it’s been against their own public policy’, said Tribe, who has testified on the subject before Congress. ‘Same-sex couples [for instance] in Massachusetts are neither better nor worse off with DOMA repealed except that the repeal of DOMA is a way of telling that couple that their marriage in Massachusetts is not going to be made the subject of a symbolic and ineffectual slam by the federal government’.”

    Though the article specifically references “marriage,” Sen. Obama’s support for the states’ right to ban that applies to whatever the relationship might be called. He has also said he thinks the issue of gay adoption should be left up to the states.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama defends his opposition to gay marriage equality, in part, by saying that the word has become too entangled with religion.
    FACT: Sen. Obama’s own denomination, the United Church of Christ, supports marriage equality, so it is strange that he sides with other denominations that do not. In any case, one must ask why he is surrendering to any religion control of a “civil” issue while costing he and his wife nothing? Most churches once supported laws that would have sent Sen. Obama’s mixed race parents to jail, but it was civil authority in the form of the US Supreme Court that overturned those laws forty years ago.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama defended going forward with the controversial Obama Campaign event in South Carolina with Donnie McClurkin, whom black lesbian pastor Irene Monroe called, “the poster boy for African-American ‘ex-gay’ ministries,” by saying that the differing sides must be brought together for dialogue.
    FACT: Sen. Obama made no arrangements for any such dialogue, even refusing to tell the evangelical audience during the concert that he disagreed with McClurkin’s opinions, the very least the many LGBT groups and black commentators had begged him to do. By video, the candidate who insists, "You’ve got to tell people what they need to hear not what they want to hear,” simply said, "The artists you’re going to hear from are some of the best in the world, and favorites of Michelle and myself."

    Unlike Sen. Clinton who apologized when told her initial response to General Pace’s homophobia was too tepid and condemned him, “Gay City News” said of Obama, "to offer up Donnie McClurkin as a take-it-or-leave-it proposition, and then suggest that gay Americans unhappy at the prospect of him being a ringleader in Obama's ‘big tent’ are culturally insensitive is flat out wrong. It is clumsy. It is insulting. And it is cynical." Gay black writer Rod McCollum wrote, “He folded like a deck of cards. If he is going to fold on the campaign trail, why would we not think he'd fold in the Oval Office?" The climax of the concert was McClurkin screaming into the microphone paid for by Sen. Obama that “God delivered me from homosexuality!” and 3000 people roared their approval.

    By contrast, when questions had arisen months before about some of the racial views of his personal friend and pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who inspired Sen. Obama to write his book, “The Audacity of Hope,” performed his marriage, and baptized his children, Sen. Obama withdrew Rev. Wright’s invitation to offer a prayer at the rally officially announcing his candidacy for the Presidency.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama asserts that he talks about "gay civil rights" and "condemning homophobia" wherever he goes.
    FACT: Despite what thousands seem to think they hear in his speeches, outside of interviews and debates where he is forced to answer questions about them explicitly just as other candidates are, many of his speeches have no reference to gays at all. And when they do, they are almost universally passive references with no mention connection to the word "rights" at all. Whatever people remember him saying at the 2004 Democratic convention, his actual words were only, "we've got some gay friends in the Red States." He’s also said, “We're distracted from our real failures, and told to blame the other party, or gay people, or immigrants.” And a synthesis of the two, “They want to divide us into Red States and Blue States, and tell us to always point the finger at somebody else, the other party, or gay people, or people of faith, or immigrants.” Many swear he explicitly condemned all homophobia at Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, Ebenezer Baptist Church when he simply said, “We have scorned our gay brothers and sisters instead of embracing them”. Admirable as far as it goes, but it doesn’t go far enough for a community that had already long ago bought into the meaningless feel-good justification of “hate the sin; love the sinner.”

    During his 20-minute South Carolina victory speech he gave shout outs to 21 different kinds of supporters, some multiple times, such as such as blacks, whites, Asians, Latinos, Native Americans, the elderly, Wal-Mart workers, etc, but never mentioned gay Americans. We were only there in spirit—the spirit of homophobia referenced in the sea of signs undulating behind him that read, "Stand For Change," purposely echoing the title of Donnie McClurkin’s Grammy-winning gospel hit, "Stand!"

    Sen. Obama has, indeed, mentioned “homophobia” in some appearances, but it is typically in the context of simply being an obstacle to overcoming HIV/AIDS that is disproportionately high in the African-American community. I am unaware of any instance when he has directly said, “Homophobia is bigotry like racism; it is an evil unto itself.”

    ITEM: While not an LGBT issue per se, Obama’s short position paper says he’s "been a global leader in the fight against AIDS" and proposes adding five billion dollars to that fight.
    FACT: Sen. Clinton wants to increase AIDS funding by at least twenty billion dollars.

    ITEM: Sen. Obama’s campaign is distributing his 64-page “Blueprint for Change—Barack Obama’s Plan for America.”
    FACT: It contains not one sentence, not one word, not one syllable about LGBT rights.

    Barack Obama. The man behind the curtain.

    Posted by: Michael Bedwell | Feb 5, 2008 12:17:57 AM

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