Gay Marriage | Minnesota | News

Emotional Former MN Lawmaker Who Cast Anti-Gay Vote Pleads for House to Not Make Mistake She Did: VIDEO

Osterman

More emotional testimony from the Minnesota Capitol marriage equality hearings today.

"I blew my vote," said former Minnesota lawmaker Lynne Osterman, describing her vote for the state's version of a Defense of Marriage Act back in the 90's.

"I didn't come to Saint Paul to single out same-sex couples and their families, but in my only term as a member," she said, her voice trembling, "I cast a politically expedient vote in favor of DOMA and I regretted that ever since. It was not in my conscience, or my own compass."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

(via good as you)

Feed This post's comment feed

Comments

  1. I thank her for speaking up. Good for her.

    Posted by: AMA | Mar 12, 2013 2:39:27 PM


  2. This is just like all of these former Republican politicians and Republicans who have/had ties with sitting Republican politicians NOW saying they are for equality!

    FU! When you had power and the chance to stand up for equality you did nothing! Well, not exactly nothing, you voted for discrimination. You pandered to your hateful republican base just to get elected. You didn’t care too much for equality then, did you?

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 12, 2013 2:44:23 PM


  3. Look, the people that are rabidly anti-gay today are basically all closeted gay men. Look at the evidence, George Reckers, Ted Haggard, Lindsay Ghramn etc....

    Posted by: Cam | Mar 12, 2013 2:44:27 PM


  4. My inner optimist: Yay!

    My inner cynic: Great, even the people who are seemingly for us are willing to vote against us.

    Posted by: Thomas | Mar 12, 2013 2:46:04 PM


  5. Hats off to this wonderful woman for her heartfelt plea for fairness!

    Posted by: ken | Mar 12, 2013 2:52:24 PM


  6. I think the least we can do is welcome with an open heart those who have a change of heart or mind. Was she wrong to vote for DOMA in 2002? Sure. Is there reason to be angry about how things are today? Sure. But let's save our anger for those who TODAY will use their power to make us second-class citizens. Let's find forgiveness and love for those who will stand with us today, no matter how they voted in the past.

    Posted by: Bill | Mar 12, 2013 2:56:05 PM


  7. @ CAM You hit the nail on the head. Not only closeted but full of fear. It is the fear that drives their hate.

    Posted by: Stephen | Mar 12, 2013 2:57:03 PM


  8. @BILL--True. The only way forward requires fully embracing people who were once against us, even if that feels kind of uncomfortable in the short term.

    Posted by: Thomas | Mar 12, 2013 3:00:29 PM


  9. If your parents made remarks about gays and fags, then you came out to them and they had a complete turn around and now love your spouse, do we continue to hate them also? I think not. Sometimes people just need to learn. If they have learned, let invite them in to our hearts. Remember love not hate.

    Posted by: Jayson | Mar 12, 2013 4:09:23 PM


  10. Again, if someone did something hateful and stupid and then now shows remorse and now does what they can to right a wrong... you take that as a win and move on.

    You try and convince people that you aren't sick or going to hell, and when they come around to your side you attack them? Now THAT's hypocritical.

    Posted by: Joseph L | Mar 12, 2013 4:18:30 PM


  11. I've had a lot of folks tell me that knowing me and my partner changed their minds. That simply knowing a loving couple was enough to correct decades of religious indoctrination. That should always be respected.

    I have been wrong about so many things in my life (for instance the likelihood that I would ever live long enough to marry my husband) I certainly cannot cast stones at those who have been wrong and have found the light.

    I understand the vitriol, but save it for folks like the douchebags at NOM or Westboro Baptist and accept this woman's heartfelt admission of guilt and go on.

    If not, it is not on her, but on you. She has publicly humiliated herself, showed her horror and publicly pleaded with those now in power to not follow her example. Pretty powerful stuff.

    Posted by: YsoSerious | Mar 12, 2013 4:29:39 PM


  12. @ Joseph L,
    Seriously? I've never personally tried to convince people that I wasn’t sick or going to hell. Are you kidding me? Those types of people are hardly worth my time but you go ahead and waste your time surrounding yourself with people that you have to plead with to get them to like you. Good luck with that.

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 12, 2013 4:46:02 PM


  13. @paul

    Get a clue, and a little self-awareness. People have to unlearn things they were taught growing up. It's not their fault, its the circumstances they were born into. It just sounds like you're a very angry man who can't let go of the past. I'm sure you have very few friends to surround yourself with because of it.

    Posted by: Not that Rob | Mar 12, 2013 4:57:07 PM


  14. This was extremely powerful. There may be some who don't believe in forgiveness or redemption, but not me. There is no undoing the past, but Ms. Osterman put herself out there to try to do good for the future. And I think she did. Her testimony likely swayed a few votes.

    Posted by: LetSodomRing | Mar 12, 2013 4:58:10 PM


  15. There is nothing to be gained by shunning those who evolve in favor of equality. Welcoming them in is the right thing to do and, more importantly, the smart thing to do. That's why a marriage equality bill can pass in 2013 and why it couldn't pass in 1996. That doesn't erase her (and people like her) disgraceful history--but she's not trying to erase it; she's sincerely owning it. Bravo.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 12, 2013 5:15:57 PM


  16. Not that Rob,

    You're talking like you have even one ounce of awareness of who I am. I am very self-aware and have an extremely positive outlook on my life and my future with more friends than I have time for, so you're wrong on all points. There are so many good, respectable people out there why would I waste my time with anti-gay bigots!!!

    My full schedule is precisely why I have zero time for people who vote for discrimination while saying simultaneously it's really not who they are and they really wanted to be fair and equal.
    Blah, blah, blah.

    You might be able to use your tired pass for these people and excuse their behavior by saying "It's not their fault, its the circumstances they were born into", but that only works on a young person who recently escaped their parents influence, NOT for a mature grown adult who has had numerous years to reflect on what is right and fair and what is not.
    I refuse to be anyone’s doormat. If you interpret that as needing to get a clue and a need to be more self-aware that’s your choice. Just don’t complain about all the shoe marks on your back.

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 12, 2013 5:26:21 PM


  17. Paul, you sound like a petulant teenager. She made her vote 11 years ago. Would you like to survey all the people---politicians and otherwise---who have changed their minds since then?

    Recall that Gavin Newsom was excoriated for legalizing SSM in SF, with Feinstein saying he cost Dems the 2004 elections. Almost none of the Democrat establishment backed him. So do you hate all of them too? Newsflash: politicians sometimes have to lie on hot button social issues.

    Posted by: Paul R | Mar 12, 2013 7:25:53 PM


  18. Paul R,

    And you sound like an old gay man who is contented being treated like a second-class citizen. (I am 19 so you were half right)

    If you would have bothered to read my first post on this tread you would see I'm not singling her out specifically. I’m fed up with people in general who once had power to do something to advance equality only to wait until they have no power to speak up. Apparently that was lost on you. That's ok; just sit back while the younger generation achieves equality for doormats like you.

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 12, 2013 8:27:03 PM


  19. Osterman's testimony was very helpful because she was a minnesota legislator who voted against civil rights speaking directly to the audience we need to convince: minnesota legislators. If only legislators in Rhode Island, Delaware and Illinois would do the same thing.

    Posted by: matt | Mar 12, 2013 8:53:04 PM


  20. @Paul Yes, I agree that people who once had the power to speak up but didn't, did the wrong thing at the time. But recognizing their sincere repentance for acting reprehensibly, and efforts to right those wrongs, is not being a "doormat." As to your comment: "@ Joseph L,
    Seriously? I've never personally tried to convince people that I wasn’t sick or going to hell. Are you kidding me? Those types of people are hardly worth my time but you go ahead and waste your time surrounding yourself with people that you have to plead with to get them to like you. Good luck with that." First, I meant the general "you" (as in the LGBT community) not you personally. Second, you never had to deal with certain things because you're 19 and the world has changed a lot in the last 10-15 years thanks to old 30-year old fogeys like me. So if you're going to get teen angst-y on me, you're speaking to the wrong audience.

    Posted by: Joseph L | Mar 12, 2013 8:59:04 PM


  21. @Paul, the younger generation will have equality because the older generation paved the way with years of grassroots work and savvy lobbying. And part of savvy lobbying is to move opponents of equality into the equality tent--if their evolution is as genuine as this woman's seems to be, she has the power to move legislators (i.e. votes) in our favor so that they don't make the same mistake she did. It's called using your allies, old or new, as tools of persuasion. When every vote counts, you don't tell an ally--however that ally arrived on the right side of history--to F off unless you want to lose. No one has to forgive her for the wrongness of her vote, but welcoming her into the fold isn't being a doormat at all. It is being smart.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 12, 2013 9:00:32 PM


  22. I for one applaud this woman. And she didn't have to come and present her case,but she did.

    Posted by: greenfuzz | Mar 12, 2013 9:16:08 PM


  23. Wow realy yur bitching about her now supporting SSm, I'll take help where I can get it and the fact she was once anti gay but now is pro gay shows how successful we have been in changing public opinion in the last ten years.

    Posted by: Lee | Mar 12, 2013 9:31:43 PM


  24. What a beautiful speech and an even more beautiful change of heart. Even though she didn't ask for forgiveness, she has mine. Lynne, thank you for taking a stand for fairness. I applaud you.

    Posted by: Marc | Mar 13, 2013 1:59:10 AM


  25. Paul, call me a doormat all you like. You have no idea how I live my life. I'd like to know one person in my life who treats me like a doormat. I don't ever even deal with antigay views.

    Grow up.

    Posted by: Paul R | Mar 13, 2013 6:02:36 AM


Post a comment







Trending


« «Former Ecuadorean Presidential Candidate Nelson Zavala Receives Fine, Political Rights Suspension for Anti-Gay Remarks« «