CPAC | Discrimination | Gay Marriage | News | Rob Portman

CPAC Attendees Blast Sen. Portman For Loving His Gay Son: VIDEO


While we're on the subject of CPAC and closed minds, ThinkProgress made the rounds at the conservative con-fab yesterday to gauge attendees' reaction to news that GOP Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio supports marriage equality because he wants his gay son to have the same rights as heterosexual couples.

So, what was the reaction? Not good. One man, a pastor, even said the Senator should "quit being so selfish as to only think about his son." Because, you know, restricting an entire population's rights because of personal religious beliefs is so selfless. And grown men dressed like 18th Century colonists make great moral guides.

Watch the clip AFTER THE JUMP.

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  1. I salute Portman and his son. The open heart it takes to grow and be willing to adjust. Regardless of when it's done, I appreciate that it's done. Ari's piece was very poignant!

    The Nazis in this clip should all be a reminder of the tremendous work we still have to do as a community to achieve full equality.

    Posted by: Jacob | Mar 16, 2013 3:09:16 PM

  2. @Scott

    Hate is hate, Scott. Doesn't matter where it's from. It's only more vile from the gays when they attack their own for simply having a different opinion on a message board. And my original opinion wasn't expressed in the way you described to begin with. Plenty of other people have the same opinion. Are you and the rest of the haters going to go into those Portman posts and respond in kind to all of those people, too?

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 16, 2013 3:12:28 PM

  3. So proud to be part of the gay community and proud to work with gay youth, and fellow gay brothers and sisters to be proud of who we are and stand tall, and not let these bigots dictate our lives. I hold my partners hand EVERYWHERE in public, because I love him dearly and it's time people are exposed to the fact that gay people can be couples,and in my case, deeply in love. And no bigot will shame us in a closet.

    So proud of the incredible gay community for all our success and achievments. Even with many hetero bigots out there, we are a community that thrives.

    Posted by: Martin California | Mar 16, 2013 3:37:52 PM

  4. @ Martin california, between all the other trolls polluting this site, just have to say I really appreciated your comment above. Well said and very true. I often think with all the continued discrimination gay people face, how well adjusted our community is. We're constant contributors to this society and as a community, have done incredibly well for ourselves.

    Can't wait to attend the equality marches with my friends end of this month

    Posted by: Alex | Mar 16, 2013 3:42:36 PM

  5. beef & fur: "the gays"? really? REALLY? the gays? no, we're not 'the gays' anymore than black people are 'the blacks' Stop using hipster psuedo homophobia from your hetero friends in vocabulary in an attempt to be cute and cool.
    People are correct. In the same breath that you attempt to fight for gay rights, you keep revealing yourself for exactly who you are, coupled with subtle hints of anti gay prejudice. Go sit at a park bench somewhere.

    Posted by: Alex | Mar 16, 2013 3:45:45 PM

  6. So thankful for whoever referenced the JMG blog in this discourse...guess what? The gays over there are just as leery about Mr. Portman.

    Here's what JMG himself posted:

    MAIN | FRIDAY, MARCH 15, 2013

    Portman: I Now Support Marriage But SCOTUS Should Stay Out Of It

    "With the overwhelming majority of young people in support of allowing gay couples to marry, in some respects the issue has become more generational than partisan. The process of citizens persuading fellow citizens is how consensus is built and enduring change is forged. That’s why I believe change should come about through the democratic process in the states. Judicial intervention from Washington would circumvent that process as it’s moving in the direction of recognizing marriage for same-sex couples. An expansive court ruling would run the risk of deepening divisions rather than resolving them. I’ve thought a great deal about this issue, and like millions of Americans in recent years, I’ve changed my mind on the question of marriage for same-sex couples. As we strive as a nation to form a more perfect union, I believe all of our sons and daughters ought to have the same opportunity to experience the joy and stability of marriage." - GOP Sen. Rob Portman, writing for the Columbus Dispatch.
    Labels: GOP, marriage equality, Rob Portman, SCOTUS

    posted by Joe

    There's your boy Portman. On your side.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 16, 2013 3:57:34 PM

  7. beef and fur; You are a very dedicated troll, congratulations.
    But you don't fool anyone

    Posted by: jjose712 | Mar 16, 2013 4:01:22 PM


    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 16, 2013 4:02:33 PM

  9. @jjose

    Yes, what a great response. However, I'm not changing my opinion, nor do I need to.

    Portman's "new" stance is good only now that his family is affected. As I said in MY ORIGINAL POST, I am happy for the change of mind, but still apprehensive. He's had this knowledge for two years, yet he didn't act on it and continued to support his views throughout the campaign and election. Even when the vote on ENDA was concerned, there was no change. Apparently, he now supports marriage equality, but thinks the SCOTUS should just stay out of it. That makes no sense. I guess he's not done evolving yet?

    It's just selfish that it was OK of him to discriminate until the balance of self interest was tipped by his son and the campaign and election was over. We'll see what happens now that he is getting pressure from Boehner and the old biddies and bigots that are his constituents and contemporaries. Yeah, I hope it starts a tidal wave of change that leaves all of the haters exemplified in this video in the dust and he begins to repair the damage he's contributed to.

    But excuse me fellas, no matter what you say, think or feel about me, this gay isn't sending up the white smoke for Portman yet. I have stronger morals than that.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 16, 2013 4:42:23 PM

  10. If you believe on principle that being gay is a an immoral and destructive choice, then to accept someone's gayness merely because he or she is your child is hypocrisy.

    The premises of the argument are false, but for those who accept them, Portman's decision is equivalent to accepting murder because one's child has turned out to be a murderer.

    There are (quite easy) ways to counter such bogus arguments, but "you're hat is stupid" isn't among them.

    Posted by: Bryan | Mar 16, 2013 6:15:12 PM

  11. Although I acknowledge that Senator Portman has worked against equality in the past, I do want to say that it must be hard for him right now. There are gays and lesbians who will also hate him for what he did in the past, and his conservative colleagues now want nothing to do with him. He is definitely between a rock and a hard place.

    Posted by: | Mar 16, 2013 6:25:26 PM

  12. The only difference between the Republican Party and the Ku Klux Klan is the thread count of their sheets.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Mar 16, 2013 6:55:18 PM

  13. beef and fur: Frankly i don't care at all

    Posted by: jjose712 | Mar 17, 2013 7:01:57 AM

  14. Huffington Post
    Posted: 03/16/2013 10:18 am

    Kenneth M. Walsh
    Writer and editor

    Sen. Rob Portman Makes 'Brave' Decision -- Once It Directly Affects His Family

    Republican Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, found himself under fire on Friday from his conservative constituents after announcing that he had had a change of heart on gay marriage.

    The Ohio lawmaker -- who was on Mitt Romney's short list of running mates -- said he came around to the decision after his 21-year-old son, Will (in checked shirt), came out to him two years ago.

    "I've come to the conclusion that for me, personally, I think this is something that we should allow people to do," Portman told CNN. "To get married, and to have the joy and stability of marriage that I've had for over 26 years. That I want all of my children to have, including our son who is gay."

    While I would like to say that it makes me happy to have the first Republican senator come out in support of marriage equality, I am having a difficult time getting past the whole "I need this EXACT situation to affect me PERSONALLY before I can do anything" mentality that seems to persist in the halls of Congress.

    Do I need to have a close relative have Parkinson's disease to think there should be government funding for a cure? Does a member of my family need to be African American for me to think the Voting Rights Act needs to be renewed? Does my house have to be destroyed by a hurricane to vote for emergency relief funding? The utter lack of empathy displayed by so many elected officials sickens me to the point that if and when some of them finally see the light, I almost hate them more... for showing a complete lack of conviction.

    I guess this is just the way it works -- social change is always slow going, just as it's been with other minorities -- but don't look for me to be handing out any awards for acting like a human being. Because while it's true that Portman has suddenly embraced gay rights, we also know that he still voiced opposition to the Employment Nondiscrimination Act while he was being considered for veep -- even though he already knew his son was gay. (Thanks, Dad.)

    I sent Senator Portman an e-mail today saying I appreciated his belated support, but that I'd like to think that moving forward, he could begin to show empathy for people even when he doesn't have a horse in the race.

    As it stand now, it kind of feels like -- as a friend so eloquently put it --giving a gold medal to someone for not spitting on homeless people.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 17, 2013 10:38:42 AM

  15. @jjose

    Obviously, you must care since you came back to monitor your responses. Congratulations on your membership in a lynch mob. Vigilante Justice looks so good on you. Sen. Portman would be so proud.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 17, 2013 10:46:34 AM

  16. Portman just found out? Look at all the pics of that sissy boy with his sissy hair as he was getting older. And Portman didn't realize? Christ, moron, wake up.

    It's a DNA passed from the mother than creates a gay son. Nice work, mom. Aren't you so proud? Gay marriage must be over turned. Where the hell are all these gays coming from? What's wrong with all these mothers? Is it in their food/water?

    We don't want to see a gay, let alone a pair of 'em. These gays provide nothing to our society. A gay has his wires crossed and is useless. Maybe he can hang out with the girls and do their hair!

    Most countries in the world dispose of gays and lesbians, including Jersey and Brooklyn.

    Only sissy places love these freaks.

    Posted by: Daisy Lee | Mar 17, 2013 12:30:12 PM

  17. this negative CPAC reaction is no doubt part of the reason Portman released a statement saying that, despite now supporting his own gay son and the idea of "marriage equality" (only state by state, natch) he will not be taking a "leadership" position on the issue, as he "doesn't want to force his opinion on others."

    Which I guess means "i accept my son, but wont' force his gayness onto the rest of you."

    or something.

    his son came out two years ago. Portman did not make any pro-Equality arguments, or statements, leading up to the last election.

    and here we have, ironically, the very people that were just like Portman - people who have no empathy or compassion for "other people's families."

    Portman needs to specifically think about THIS - for years he didn't care, until it became personal in his immediate family. how, then, does he hope to convince other people, who don't know that they have a gay kid, to care?

    that'll be his dilemma - how to get others in his political arena to do what he was unable to do.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Mar 17, 2013 12:36:27 PM

  18. Before I'm regulated back into being a slave again according to these batsh*t crazy people, I must remind you that Nobody's family tree makes them a native of this country unless there is Indian blood somewhere (I have Seminole in my family). The Koch brothers money has done well with these teabaggers who vote against their own interests. I say we get a jump on the midterm elections and figure out a way to undo gerrymandered idiots.

    Posted by: DC Arnold | Mar 17, 2013 2:07:37 PM

  19. CPAC . . What the hell is the require age restriction there, 85 and up. The woman who is the "product of the 50's", give me a break honey! These people are perfect for the Republican Party, too white, too old, and too conservative and without the simple understanding of the world today. You can't tell the guy with the white hair and cell phone has been seem in a gay bar in whatever city he comes from, nelly really doesn't describe him well enough, All these jerks are not long for this world, fortunately! Feel sorry forth them they are a dying breed, the bight new world will be laughing at this group well before the 2016 election rolls aground!. The white pastor in the BLACK Church, God help those poor back people!

    Posted by: EJC | Mar 17, 2013 6:41:24 PM

  20. Slate

    Rob Portman and the Politics of Narcissism
    By Matthew Yglesias | Posted Friday, March 15, 2013, at 12:26 PM

    I'm glad that Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio has reconsidered his view on gay marriage upon realization that his son is gay, but I also find this particular window into moderation—memorably dubbed Miss America conservatism by Mark Schmitt—to be the most annoying form.

    Remember when Sarah Palin was running for vice president on a platform of tax cuts and reduced spending? But there was one form of domestic social spending she liked to champion? Spending on disabled children? Because she had a disabled child personally? Yet somehow her personal experience with disability didn't lead her to any conclusions about the millions of mothers simply struggling to raise children in conditions of general poorness. Rob Portman doesn't have a son with a pre-existing medical condition who's locked out of the health insurance market. Rob Portman doesn't have a son engaged in peasant agriculture whose livelihood is likely to be wiped out by climate change. Rob Portman doesn't have a son who'll be malnourished if SNAP benefits are cut. So Rob Portman doesn't care.

    It's a great strength of the movement for gay political equality that lots of important and influential people happen to have gay children. That obviously does change people's thinking. And good for them.

    But if Portman can turn around on one issue once he realizes how it touches his family personally, shouldn't he take some time to think about how he might feel about other issues that don't happen to touch him personally? Obviously the answers to complicated public policy questions don't just directly fall out of the emotion of compassion. But what Portman is telling us here is that on this one issue, his previous position was driven by a lack of compassion and empathy. Once he looked at the issue through his son's eyes, he realized he was wrong. Shouldn't that lead to some broader soul-searching? Is it just a coincidence that his son is gay, and also gay rights is the one issue on which a lack of empathy was leading him astray? That, it seems to me, would be a pretty remarkable coincidence. The great challenge for a senator isn't to go to Washington and represent the problems of his own family. It's to try to obtain the intellectual and moral perspective necessary to represent the problems of the people who don't have direct access to the corridors of power.

    Senators basically never have poor kids. That's something members of Congress should think about. Especially members of Congress who know personally that realizing an issue affects their own children changes their thinking.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 17, 2013 7:58:34 PM

  21. Blah, blah blah. Just more self serving dispatches from self enlightened gays who don't practice what they preach.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 17, 2013 9:07:35 PM

  22. It's quite obvious repukes/t-baggers have no concept of "family" or "values". Should not surprise anyone with a working brain though.

    Posted by: mmike1969 | Mar 17, 2013 9:22:38 PM

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