2010 Election | Democratic Party | Florida | News

AP Warns That Angry Gay Voters Could Spoil Election for Dems


A new AP article notes both the lack of enthusiasm and anger of gay voters as midterm elections approach, and warns that the mood could affect many races.

If Democratic candidates are counting on long-standing support from gay voters to help stave off big losses on Nov. 2, they could be in for a surprise.

Across the country, activists say gay voters are angry — at the lack of progress on issues from eliminating employment discrimination to uncertainty over serving in the military to the economy — and some are choosing to sit out this election or look for other candidates. President Barack Obama's hometown of Chicago, with its large, politically and socially active gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, offers a snapshot of what some are calling the "enthusiasm gap" between voters who came out strong for Obama and other Democrats in 2008 and re-energized Republican base voters, including tea party enthusiasts who say they are primed to storm the polls.

It didn't help that the controversy over the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy for gays erupted less than two weeks before the election, when a judge overturned it, then Obama's justice department decided to fight the judge's decision. On Thursday, the Defense Department declared that "don't ask, don't tell" is official policy but set up a new system that could make it tougher to get thrown out of the military for being openly gay.

"It's all talk and nothing's happening, and I'm just over it," said Coatar, 62, a church business manager who said she's as concerned about health care and homelessness as about gay issues. "I don't know who to vote for and the election is a week away."

However you might feel about what has been accomplished thus far, not to vote would only be more damaging.

Joe Jervis makes another point: "Folks, you must vote. And yes, you should vote Democrat, even as disappointed as you may feel, if for no other reason than this is the year that we vote in the candidates that will control post-census redistricting. Are you so angry about DADT that you'd put the fucking teabaggers in charge of redrawing the boundaries of your district?"

Today, Save Dade, Miami-Dade County's leading organization dedicated to fighting anti-gay discrimination put out a PSA making a few more good points.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. I'm sorry but Joe Jervis can shove it up his ass. I'm sick and tired of the same people who cheered Obama to victory being the same ones that tell us we have to suck it up now and do what they say...or else. Don't fucking blame me for the mess YOU made. Clean it the fuck up, or we will.

    Posted by: gaylib | Oct 25, 2010 1:37:10 PM

  2. don't be stupid by not voting, sheeple. we are angry and a bit hurt, by not voting we leave ourselves even MORE vulnerable.
    remember: the enemy of my (current) enemy will probably send you to a camp.

    Posted by: el smrtmnky | Oct 25, 2010 1:37:37 PM

  3. Oh, and Joe might want to save his lecture for the commander in chief. Seems hes not endorsing the Democrat for Gov in RI because Repug lite Lincoln Chafee called in a favor for endorsing him over McCain. If he's not above thumbing his nose at Democrats, why should I be?

    Posted by: gaylib | Oct 25, 2010 1:39:17 PM

  4. So, do I vote for the people who hate me to my face, or the people who lie to my face, tell me they want to help, then toss me aside as soon as the political going gets tough.

    I'm just going to vote anti-incumbent across the board - probably mostly libertarian. The dirty dems aren't getting my vote again - fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Don't piss on me and tell me it's raining.

    Posted by: joe | Oct 25, 2010 1:39:58 PM

  5. Unfortunately it ends up sounding like a rolling blackmail threat: "The Democrats may well be doing nothing to help gay rights but you're still forced to vote for them otherwise a worse lot will get in - so you're screwed!"

    Posted by: dreamfish | Oct 25, 2010 1:40:17 PM

  6. well that would be what the Republicans want. So I say Gay Dems stay at home and see how far DADT gets with a Republican Government.Obama may not be perfect but I think he wants to make sure that no one can repeal the law once it is signed. So guys get off your horses he will get it done.

    Posted by: hassia | Oct 25, 2010 1:40:45 PM

  7. What has become abundantly clear in the last several months is that gay people have NO allies. We are treated by republicans and democrats alike as pawns to be sacrificed in a larger political game. So be it. Time to change the game.

    While going to the polls is the responsibility of every citizen, voting for democrats merely because they're "better than" tea-baggers is not a reasonable premise? I refuse to vote for the lesser of two evils, or indeed for any candidate who cannot tell me how and when they will take a stand in support of my equal rights. For me, that means giving up on the two-party system this election cycle and voting for someone else. Will that someone else win? Unlikely. But at least, months down the line when DADT is still in force and ENDA has still not been brought to a vote, I will not have to deal with guilt and frustration about having been complicit in the election of cowards. And you, having lost to a gaggle of tea-baggers, may just think twice about taking my vote for granted in the future.

    Gay people are tired of being used by you to advance your own political agendas. And I, for one, am tired of lectured by fellow "progressives" to take the "long view" and cast my vote once again for the "ally" who screwed me last week. You want my vote? Earn it.

    Posted by: d | Oct 25, 2010 1:41:28 PM

  8. Voting is sacred and we should all vote, even if we vote for third party candidates as a protest. And Obama is not on the ballot this year, but plenty of excellent Democrats are and some of them need our support. I'm looking closely this year at which of my representatives have been actual friends of our community. If a candidate hasn't given real support to our needs, I'm voting for a third party candidate.

    Posted by: bklynbryan | Oct 25, 2010 1:46:37 PM

  9. The messaging I'm starting to get sounds eerily familiar to 2004, when gays (and specifically gay marriage amendments in states) were blamed for significant Democrat losses. If/when the Dems lose either one or more of their majorities, or at the very least lose a large number of seats within their majorities, do I get to say "I told you so" when the news cycle and pundits start blaming gay voters for the losses? Rather than blame the do-nothing but lip service politicians who did nothing but give us lip service (if they even gave us that!), I pretty much guarantee we're going to see a lot of articles about those whiny, impatient gays who screwed us in 2010, just like they did in 2004.

    Posted by: MrRoboto | Oct 25, 2010 1:52:36 PM

  10. This is fear mongering in the service ideology, not about gay rights. I have no trust for gay republicans or gay democrats. It's the difference between passive and active bigotry, and I'll have no part of either.

    Posted by: TANK | Oct 25, 2010 1:52:52 PM

  11. My local dems support equality. Since their stance on other issues also tends to align with my interests, they still get my vote.

    I can't do anything about the white house or the democrats living in hicksville.

    Posted by: Mike B. | Oct 25, 2010 1:57:43 PM

  12. DADT will get as far with the Republicans as it has with the Democrats. Using that as a scare tactic, especially after 2 years of overwhelming Democratic majorities in Congress and a Democratic President, just won't work anymore.

    Posted by: The Milkman | Oct 25, 2010 1:58:03 PM

  13. I'm voting for a Democrat for Congress. Not because of anything he stands for in particular, but because I fear the G.O.P. may successfully dismantle the health bill passed earlier this year.
    It took seventy years to get some kind of socialized medicine on the books. We can't allow the government to kill it before it even goes into effect.
    Also, there's the re-districting.

    Posted by: Rodney Wollam | Oct 25, 2010 2:01:25 PM

  14. Funny you would go to Joe Jervis when if you had gone to fellow gay boy Avarosis you'll find that even Obama isn't supporting the dem candidate, see RI gov. race.

    Posted by: Jersey | Oct 25, 2010 2:01:54 PM

  15. If you don't vote, the Republicans win. The party that calls for writing us out of the U.S. Constitution wins. The party that hates gay Americans win. The party that hates poor people and brown people and disabled people and ... and ...

    Vote. Hold your nose and vote for Democrats because, timid though they may be, Republicans are so very much worse.

    Remember, if you don't vote, it's not just Democrats you're hurting. It's all Americans -- except for Republicans and their oligarchic, homophobic, racist friends.

    Posted by: K in VA | Oct 25, 2010 2:06:24 PM

  16. I all for voting, but I'm getting tired of this meme.

    So if the Dems get their asses handed to them it's our fault? That's going to be the narrative? Nothing about their policies, their candidates or the campaigns they run? The fact that at lot of people are plenty underwhelmed with what passed for leadership these last 18 or so months? The Dems. need to own their failures and stop scapegoating the gays.

    Posted by: Leo | Oct 25, 2010 2:08:27 PM

  17. I have never been a single issue voter and a few timse have actually voted for a Republican, however after their behavior of the past 2 years and willingness to see very aspect of the middle and working classes of this country crash and burn ( let alone glbt issues) to suit their political needs and ambitions and to embrace and inflame blatant bigotry and fear mongering with oopen arms, there is no way I will ever vote anything but the straight demorcratic ticket, unless bloomberg runs for a 4th term as a republican I would vote for him.
    Stop your whining, countless elections are about the lesser of two evils, just think what a shit storm we would be in had McCain won and died and we had president palin to contend with

    Posted by: jerry | Oct 25, 2010 2:09:48 PM

  18. BRKLYNBRYAN is right.

    And the Teabaggers would be a tremendous disaster for this nation.

    Posted by: David R. | Oct 25, 2010 2:11:29 PM

  19. Bill Maher is right - better to have friends that disappoint you, than have your enemies in office.

    Republicans are far worse.

    Demint saying gays shouldn't be allowed to teach school?

    O'Donnell thinks gays can be cured?

    No thanks.


    Posted by: secure214 | Oct 25, 2010 2:15:10 PM

  20. The clear answer is that we should be voting for Democrats, but keeping our mouths shut about it.

    It's the new Don't Ask Don't Tell!

    Posted by: Feral | Oct 25, 2010 2:15:56 PM

  21. am i disillusioned? yes. enough so that i would vote for a republican, tea party or libertarian? no. politics are like a good game of chess. nothing is as it seems. you have to finesse and look forward as you plan your strategy. and face it, the dems are our only hope, given the current choices.

    Posted by: psgoodguy | Oct 25, 2010 2:16:07 PM

  22. Based on the comment threads over at JMG, the people who take Joe Jervis' advice on how to vote make TANK look reasoned and sane.

    Posted by: Christopher | Oct 25, 2010 2:16:07 PM

  23. If we keep voting for the Dems without demanding action, they just keep taking us for granted and do nothing except say nice words (sometimes). They will no longer get my vote until DOMA is history. I'm voting socialist or green or some other progressive party.

    Posted by: Joseph | Oct 25, 2010 2:17:08 PM

  24. No. Vote for candidates who will advance gay rights. Those candidates aren't just democrat. Party fealty is for unthinking people. You lose yourself when you belong.

    Posted by: TANK | Oct 25, 2010 2:19:28 PM

  25. Yep...Gays are being smart this time around! The GOP takes both houses, stalls and rolls back ANY protections for GLBT issues, and then they take away any reforms for healthcare, finance, and jobs creation...gay issues get pushed back another two election cycles...and we see legal challenges going on federally to every equality measure that has occured in the last decade.
    Oh yeah gays...we'll sure show them!

    Posted by: JT | Oct 25, 2010 2:19:43 PM

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