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. Hmm, Hillary Clinton takes almost $1 million dollars from lobbyists which she will have to pay back. Still think she gives a damn about you?

    Oh yeah, Barack Obama does NOT take money from lobbyists! Yup, it's a real tough choice.

    Posted by: soulbrotha | Feb 5, 2008 12:31:43 AM

  2. I have family that lives overseas and they never heard of Obama. They have no idea of who he is or what he stands for. So, sorry...Hillary gets my vote!

    Posted by: Fab | Feb 5, 2008 12:32:15 AM

  3. soulbrotha and michael bedwell - to your corners & take a few deep breaths. miss fab is calling a "time out" to tell everyone that foreigners know nothing about no one running for US Prez (yeah - I'm aware of the grammar.)

    really - it sometimes does make you cherish our politics. At least David Ehrenstein hasn't hurled a verbal Molotov cocktail on the boards (so far...)

    Posted by: resurrect | Feb 5, 2008 12:52:12 AM

  4. A few weeks ago, one of my Obama supporting friends sent me this video link, with Obama’s recent sermon at the former church of Martin Luther King Jr., but I kept putting off watching because I felt bombarded by political news and messages. However, recently, I finally got around to watching it and was really surprised by it. Not just by the delivery, I was genuinely impressed by his deeply spiritual message – of unity, empathy for others, and hope. I think it is an extraordinary speech for anyone, let alone a politician.

    And according to the Human Rights Fund, it is one of the rare times a major presidential candidate has addressed homophobia in front of a non-gay crowd.

    Posted by: California Joe | Feb 5, 2008 12:59:19 AM

  5. JOHN,

    I'm not trying to smear Obama. In fact, I've received that Obama-Is-A-Radical-Muslim-Educated-In-A-Wahabbist-School-In-Jakarta email three times so far and three times I've hit 'Reply All' to inform people that the story is simply NOT TRUE and that Barack Obama is a Christian. I'm not out to smear Obama. And my story isn't one of hearing something from a friend who heard it from a friend. I heard the story of Obama shunning Gavin Newsom from one of my closest friends, an Obama supporter who works closely with Newsom on LGBT issues. That's hardly hearing something from a friend of a friend of a friend.


    Posted by: peterparker | Feb 5, 2008 3:27:00 AM

  6. Resurrect, I have barely spoken a word in all the posts that Andy has had on this race. Bedwell has spouted ad nauseum from day 1. So I think I got room to rumble.

    This is from

    Hillary's "Experience" LieIf that's her selling point, put me down for Obama.
    By Timothy Noah
    Posted Monday, Jan. 14, 2008,

    When the 2008 presidential campaign began, I lacked strong feelings for or against Hillary Rodham Clinton. I knew, of course, that many people loathed the former first lady and that many other people adored her. But I'd never felt the large emotions she seemed to stir in others. New York's junior senator wants to be president? Fine, I thought. Let's hear her pitch. Because she was still a relative newcomer to government service, I assumed that, more than most presidential candidates, Clinton would recognize the need to give voters a reason to vote for her. I waited expectantly to discover what that reason might be.

    I never dreamed the reason would be "experience." More astonishing still, the public seems to be buying it. According to a new New York Times/CBS News poll, 79 percent of all Democratic primary voters believe that Hillary Clinton has "prepared herself well enough for the job of President," compared with only 40 percent for Obama. "Experience Counts" declared the headline of a Jan. 9 editorial in the Boston Globe about the New Hampshire victories of Hillary Clinton and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. "The results suggest that, at the least, New Hampshire voters put more stock in the length of a candidate's track record than Iowa voters did," the Globe said. But the paper never got around to explaining what, in Hillary's case, that experience consisted of.

    Let's be clear. If you're a Democrat, experience isn't on this year's menu. The most experienced among the major candidates seeking the Democratic nomination were Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware and Sen. Christopher Dodd of Connecticut. They have now dropped out. The remaining major candidates—Clinton, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and former Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C.—all lack lengthy records in government.

    Edwards served a single term in the Senate. Obama served eight years in the Illinois state Senate and is halfway through his first term in the U.S. Senate. Clinton is about to begin her eighth year in the U.S. Senate. Going by years spent as an elective official, Obama's 11 years exceeds Clinton's seven, which in turn exceeds Edwards' six. But it's a silly calculus. They all come out about the same, even when you factor in Clinton's youthful work on the House judiciary committee's impeachment inquiry, her membership on the board of the Legal Services Corp., her chairmanship of the Arkansas Educational Standards committee, her crafting of an unsuccessful national health-care bill, and her sharing Bill Clinton's bed most nights while he was Arkansas governor and president of the United States.

    In Slate's women's blog, the "XX Factor," various colleagues have argued (see here, here, and here) that Clinton has sufficient experience under her belt to be president. I agree, but that's not the right question. The more urgent question is: Where the hell does she come off claiming superior experience? Here Clinton is in the Jan. 14 Newsweek, comparing herself with Obama:

    I wish it didn't have to be a choice. I think a lot of people who are torn between us feel that way. But it is a contest, and the contrasts have to be drawn and the questions have to be asked because, obviously, I wouldn't be in this race and working as hard as I am unless I thought I am uniquely qualified at this moment in our history to be the president we need starting in 2009 … I think it is informed by my deep experience over the last 35 years, my firsthand knowledge of what goes on inside a White House.

    Oh, please. Thirty-five years takes you back to 1973, half of which Hillary spent in law school, for crying out loud. I don't mean to denigrate her professional experience. Clinton worked many years in corporate and public-interest law, performed advocacy work for the Children's Defense Fund and other groups, and was a university lecturer. She also devoted herself to raising a seemingly bright and loving daughter, which is no small feat, particularly given the public spotlight and some conspicuously bad behavior on the father's part.

    But in government, Clinton's chief role over the years has been that of kibitzer. An important kibitzer, to be sure—what spouse isn't?—but not a direct participant. Clinton emphasizes in particular her profound experience in foreign policy. Here she is on Dec. 20:

    It is tempting any time things seem quieter for a minute on the international front to think that we don't need a president who's up to speed on foreign affairs and military matters. Well, that's the kind of logic that got us George Bush in the first place. Experience in foreign affairs is critical for ending the war in Iraq, averting war in Iran, negotiating a Middle East peace and dealing with North Korea.

    But a Dec. 26 New York Times story revealed that during her husband's two terms in office, Hillary Clinton did not hold a security clearance, did not attend meetings of the National Security Council, and was not given a copy of the president's daily intelligence briefing. During trips to Bosnia and Kosovo, she "acted as a spokeswoman for American interests rather than as a negotiator." On military affairs, most of her experience derives not from her White House years but from serving on the Senate armed services committee. In this capacity, William Kristol notes gleefully in the Jan. 14 New York Times, Clinton told Gen. David Petraeus this past September that his reports of military progress in Iraq—since shown to be undeniable—required "the willing suspension of disbelief." (What Kristol and Clinton both fail to say is that the surge's laudable military success has created a short-term opportunity that the Iraqi government and Bush himself are doing tragically little to seize. For example, a much-touted move by the Iraqi parliament to open government jobs to former members of the Baath party is, according to a Jan. 14 New York Times story, "riddled with loopholes and caveats to the point that some Sunni and Shiite officials say it could actually exclude more former Baathists than it lets back in.")

    Clinton's claim to superior experience isn't merely dishonest. It's also potentially dangerous should she become the nominee. If Clinton continues to build her campaign on the dubious foundation of government experience, it shouldn't be very difficult for her GOP opponent to pull that edifice down. That's especially true if a certain white-haired senator now serving his 25th year in Congress (four in the House and 21 in the Senate) wins the nomination. McCain could easily make Hillary look like an absolute fraud who is no more truthful about her depth of government experience than she is about why her mother named her "Hillary." Dennis Kucinich has more government experience than Clinton. (He also has a better health-care plan, but we'll save that for another day.) If Clinton doesn't find a new theme soon, she won't just be cutting Obama's throat. She'll also be cutting her own.

    Posted by: soulbrotha | Feb 5, 2008 3:35:20 AM

  7. The Clinton/Obama stand on issues is very similar. On policy, the same.

    I voted for Barack in 2004 to be my senator. I like him. But Hillary is the right choice for President.

    Some want to cling to "hope." I'll cling to the person who can get shit done. Hopefully tomorrow, that will be finally clear to our myth-building media whose press coverage of Barack is just shy of canonizing him because Oprah and Arnold's wife came out to support him today.

    But whoever wins the nomination gets my vote. I'd rather lose an eye than vote for John McCain.

    Posted by: Marco | Feb 5, 2008 3:46:36 AM

  8. Im just saying, the Dems are giving nothing. At least the GOP lets you know where they stand. The Dems are sneaky liars. Look at the last Dem administration. Why is Hillary going to be different from Bill? Obama has no specific gay rights platform in his message. The only pro gay rights Dems have left the race.
    At least with McCain, some progress could be made. He is an open minded moderate conservative. Which, sorry boys, is the real change we need right now.

    Posted by: Vi Agara | Feb 5, 2008 6:35:29 AM

  9. Obama and Clinton are more similar than different except for that damn Iraq "war" vote.

    I made my decision watching the debates....and IMHO, Obama just "sputters" too much when giving answers, like his mouth is only 1 second ahead of his thoughts because he is trying to figure out what to say. Ironically, he speech patterns are too much like GW for my taste (e.g., "now what did my advisors tell me to say," "what was my rehearsed answer to this question").

    Posted by: qjersey | Feb 5, 2008 7:28:21 AM

  10. To any and all Obama supporters remember this. In the unlikely event that he wins the nomination, this country will be governed by a Republican. That much is guaranteed. There will be a stampede to the polls in the general election in November to make sure a black man does not occupy the Oval Office. Go ahead a post all of the hate messages you want. The majority of Americans will not allow Obama this right of passage. Watch and learn.

    Posted by: Bobby | Feb 5, 2008 8:43:30 AM

  11. Bobby, I could not agree with you more, the facts are sad but true. Deep down racism lies all over this country. All that matters is we beat McCain and Clinton is the only one who can do it. As per Clinton: "It took a Clinton to clean up after the first Bush, it will take a Clinton to clean up after the second".

    Posted by: davey | Feb 5, 2008 9:31:55 AM

  12. Bobby: That's just it. 1) America is not ready for someone like Obama. 2) Obama is all words and no action or details. His arguments are vapourous and nebulous. I hate talkers. America needs a do-er.

    Posted by: Landis | Feb 5, 2008 9:31:57 AM

  13. Bobby, by basing your vote on suspicions of other people's potential racism is a sad way to cover up for one's own racism. If you can't vote for a black man, then fine, but don't blame it on others.
    And QJersey, making your decision based on someone's speech patterns is just as sad.
    What is wrong people? I can totally accept other people's decision to vote for Hillary, but please use some common sense while doing it.

    Posted by: Rob | Feb 5, 2008 9:34:33 AM

  14. 1. Please stop cutting and pasting entire articles into comments. It's annoying and unnecessary. If you cannot formulate your own thoughts regarding the issue, don't comment. If I cared what thought about something, I'd read

    2. I still say it's easy to forget that the political climate in 1994 was radically different than it is today and continuing to judge Bill Clinton on DADT and DOMA is futile and unfair. How easily we forget that as unfair as we see DADT today, it was actually a compromise in the 90s. Prior to DADT, gays were not even technically allowed to serve, whether they kept it to themselves or not. How quickly we forget that Bill Clinton had no real choices in terms of DADT. Congress held the power when that decision was made. Feel betrayed all you want, but Bill Clinton and Hillary have been completely open minded and friends of the gay community. I have seen absolutely nothing to convince me that Obama feels that way. At the VERY least, Hillary and Obama feel the same way about gay agendas in terms of policy. At least Hillary has a voting record to confirm what she says. The same cannot be said for Obama. I trust that he means what he says, but if the choice between he and Hillary mean the same thing, then I'll go with the one that actually has a strong voting record on the many other issues I care about beyond DADT, gay marriage and such. The fact is, if gay marriage was the only issue any of you cared about, you'd have been supporting Dennis Kucinich this entire time. There's a reason he isn't endorsed by gay organizations. Because there are many other important issues that we should care about beyond our own interests.

    Posted by: Carrie B | Feb 5, 2008 10:28:00 AM

  15. Rob, obviously you don't have any common sense. I want a Democrat in the White House. Obama is NOT electable in the November general election. Never mind the fact that he is nothing but hot air with no substance. We don't have another year for a new President to find his footing. Especially someone as green as Obama. It's going to be late January 2009 before the new President takes office. Add another year for a freshman to find his way, that is IF he was even elected. I am nearly 60 years old and trust me, I've been around. I know how people think. People will be drug out of nursing homes and rolled to the polls to make sure Obama is not elected President in the event he wins the Democratic nomination. If this vote is close today, I am praying for divine intervention to guide the super delegates to throw this to Hillary. Otherwise, John McCain will be the new President. God help us if that happens.

    Posted by: Bobby | Feb 5, 2008 10:30:47 AM

  16. Shit, if the Giants can win the Superbowl against the mighty Patriots, then Obama or Clinton can beat Grandpa McCain and whatever nucklehead runs with him( Guiliani, Romney, Huckabee, Strom Thurmond, etc.).

    It's either Hillary or Barack at the head of the Democratic Ticket for 2008. The Democratic Party is now committed to taking a huge gamble of historic proportions--it's result of the Democratic Party showing 40 years of inclusiveness and maybe greatness--yeah, in a way. Get used to it Democrats! (is it "use to it" or "used to it"--one of you grammar queens...I mean, grammar boys let me know.)

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Feb 5, 2008 10:43:44 AM

  17. Agreed with's exciting either way! And we can't get all caught up in who can beat McCain. We all know we will support either one if they win this today. As a Hillary supporter, I'm fully ready to support Obama if he wins the nomination. Either of them are better than McCain and whatever old fogey they pick to run with him!

    Posted by: Carrie B | Feb 5, 2008 10:50:01 AM

  18. Both leading Democratic candidates echo what another Dixiecrat, George Wallace, said about state rights vs. civil rights. In this case they claim that the rights to marry or form civil unions are states rights, not civil rights guaranteed by the constitution. Nothing could be clearer – the Democrats are against our civil right to marry.

    Which is not surprising; both of them brazenly pander to christian bigots. Obama is associated with Mary Mary, Donnie and McKulkin and the Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell, George Bush’s ‘spirit’ advisor and other superstitious gaybashers. However, Obama’s gaybashing supporters are just bigot chump change compared to Hillary Clintons’. She’s admired by former Senators Brownback of Kansas and Santorum of Pennsylvania, her littermates in a Senatorial bible studies class and by Pat Robertson and Rupert Murdoch of Faux news, who raises money for her.

    The Democratic Party gutted ENDA and dropped the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes bill so they wouldn't be issues in the 2008 campaign. They control the Congress but refused to repeal DADT and DOMA because they don't have support in their own party. Nothing could be clearer - they oppose us on these questions and will continue to do so after the election.

    For those of you who admire candidates who oppose GLBT equality like Obama, McCain, Clinton and Romney or who support the war, union busting, crappy health care and want to sabotage our standard of living and send the economy into a steeper nosedive with tax cuts for the rich and deregulation of corporate predators, we’ll understand. What we wont’ understand is if you don’t like gaybashing, the war and economic chaos and vote for them anyway. It seems suicidal. When one of them gets elected you’ll have no one to blame but yourself. Next year we may remind you from time to time that your vote helped elect them and that that’s why we’re still getting stabbed in the back.

    If you want real change then vote for any communist, socialist, labor or other left wing party or for ‘none of the above’ as we do here in Nevada. In addition tens of millions will refuse to vote, disgusted at the latest round of lesser evils to come down the pike.

    A vote for a lesser evil is a wasted vote, or worse, a vote FOR our opponents

    Posted by: Bill Perdue, RainbowRED | Feb 5, 2008 4:05:45 PM

  19. Oh, Bill, you had to bring me back to reality, didn't you? I didn't say Obama & Clinton were perfect. I didn't even say the Democratic Party is perfect. But, my God, it's a long way from being the party of Strom Thurmond, John Stennis, George Wallace & Lester Maddox: also, Richard Daley, Frank Rizzo, all the Yankee Democrat mayors who unleashed their police departments on black folks in the 60s--to go from that political party to one that can nominate a woman or a black man. Are Democrats ever going to threaten the status quo, the financial foundations of American society? No. But it's better than slavery...well, wait a minute--the Democrats were for that.

    It's better than Jim Crow and no voting rights...well, wait a minute, half of Democrats were for those in the 1960s.

    It's the culmination of what Democrats laid the foundations for in 1972: blacks, women, Latinos, gays-- Inclusiveness. Now, not having a white (or pink) penis can stop you from winning the Democratic nomination. OK?

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Feb 5, 2008 4:27:38 PM

  20. "...white or pink penis CAN'T stop you..." With the Republicans you still need one to win their nomination. Even a 72 year old one that only works with Viagra. I know, I'm being mean, but it's time to get tough with Grandpa McCain.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Feb 5, 2008 4:34:15 PM

  21. You are all hugely missing the point.

    The main concern for Democrats in this election SHOULD be electability. And unless you people want to end up talking about President McCain in a year's time, you had better get your heads out of the clouds and vote for Barack Obama.

    Because NOBODY with any kind of Right-wing bent will stand for Hillary Clinton taking the White House.


    Posted by: John | Feb 5, 2008 5:02:56 PM

  22. Derrick from Philly. I’ve read your comments and unlike most who post here you make it a point to remember history. People working outside of the Democratic Party take it one step further. If we don’t like what we see we simply reject it and try to build something better.
    We can be against Democratic party sellouts and backstabbers regardless – a backstabber is a backstabber.

    The inclusiveness you talk about is a racket – it lets you choose between parties and candidates whose differences are cosmetic at best. They dumped our protective bills. They're murdering Iraqi's so fast no one can count the bodies. They're all against socialized medicine. They've wrecked the economy and our standard of living. And they’re so proud of all that that they’ll dish out more of the same after the election.

    The difference is that now even larger numbers of people actively boycott the elections in disgust. And large numbers of people who vote Democratic are far to the left of that Party. When next year brings another dose of same old, same old many of them will bolt. We’ll be waiting with open arms to organize them. Our goal will be build what we desperately need, a massive leftwing militant party to take on and defeat all these backstabbers.

    Posted by: Bill Perdue | Feb 5, 2008 5:40:28 PM

  23. In all fairness, while my post focused on Hillary, it's not like I'm very pleased with the choice Obama offers, in terms of GLBT progress. I don't think we will get much support from either candidate. What most surprised me is that, even though Hillary will have my vote if nominated, there is so much residual anger over the lack of courage displayed by Democrats in general over the last 16 years. The Clinton name is just the lightning rod for all that pent up hostility over those issues. That first post came pouring out of me when I read that statement. We'd be better off with a nominee who lost the general election because they had the courage to just stand up for what was right and say it out loud than we would be with an elected coward. Because once somebody says the words, they can't be taken back. And the next nominee won't be afraid to venture into the unknown, and they might be elected.

    But cowards are all we have in this race.

    Posted by: JB | Feb 5, 2008 7:13:22 PM

  24. Bill Perdue,

    I've never underestimated your knowledge and insight into the political game we play in the United States. Bill, there has never been a viable Leftist movement in the United States, has there? During the 1920's and especially during the Great Depression you had a Communist Party here, but it was destroyed by the time of WWII. Americans never blame those above them for their hard times, they blame those below them: middle-class Americans blame "welfare mothers" for their problems, they don't blame rich men who steal their retirement funds. How many Americans really care about redistributing wealth, and ending the misery of poverty in this country. Jesus can't even make them do that, and that was what his ministry was all about: social fairness. But you can't convince these phoney American "Christians" that they miss the whole message in the teachings of their "Lord & Savior"

    So, why am I a Democrat? Well, it's the only game in town for me.

    A friend of mine describes the American two party system this way, "it's Americans deciding which is the best of two ways they want to be lied to and be cheated." Isn't that similar to what Gore Vidal said about the Dems and the GOP?

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Feb 6, 2008 11:04:51 AM

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