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Gay Congressional Candidate Sean Eldridge Officially Kicks Off NY Campaign with New Ad: VIDEO

Eldridge

Sean Eldridge, the former political director at Freedom to Marry and husband of Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who filed papers back in February to run for Congress from upstate New York, last night unveiled an ad announcing his campaign along with a website.

The campaign announcement has been preceded, in July, by a pointed profile in The New York Times of Eldridge and Hughes entitled, "Young, Rich and Relocating Yet Again in Hunt for Political Office." That article thrilled Republicans who believed the profile only furthered a narrative about Eldridge they're trying to make stick, wrote our Sean Mandell.

The Times Union adds:

He's worked to raise his business profile in recent months, and Republicans, sensing his ambition, have already rushed to paint him as a rich carpet-bagger.

While Eldridge has yet to be officially endorsed by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, DCCC spokesperson Emily Bittner came to Eldridge's defense:

“While a lot of people talk about the needs to create jobs, Sean Eldridge has actually been doing it, investing in small businesses throughout the Hudson Valley and helping them to expand and create jobs. Sean also has a strong record promoting environmental protection and civil rights throughout New York. While some folks work tirelessly to protect tax breaks for billionaires and corporate special interests, Sean has been working to grow small businesses and fight for middle class families.”

Those issues are at the forefront of Eldridge's new ad. Buzzfeed points out that what's not there is any mention of his LGBT work or the details that he's gay and married to Hughes. Eldridge's website does mention his support for marriage equality in his online bio and in the issues section of his website.

Writes Capitol Confidential:

The race will be instantly competitive because of Eldridge’s personal wealth: Eldridge married Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes last year, and has already invested $215,000 in his campaign. The 19th District covers the mid-Hudson Valley and Catskills, as well as parts of Rensselaer and Montgomery counties, and broke for Barack Obama in 2012 even as [Eldridge's opponent Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook] won a solid re-election.

Eldridge is the only Democrat running.

Watch Eldridge's campaign announcement, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Congressional Candidate Sean Eldridge Officially Kicks Off NY Campaign with New Ad: VIDEO" »


Gay Congressional Candidate Sean Eldridge Hit With Attack Ad: VIDEO

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Sean Eldridge, husband to Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who in February filed papers to run for Congress in New York's 19th congressional district against Republican incumbent Chris Gibson, has come under attack in a new online ad released by the National Republican Campaign Committee. The online ad, which reportedly cost "several hundred dollars to post," targets Eldridge as a rich, out of touch carpetbagging elite who doesn't understand the needs of hard-working New Yorkers, Capitol Confidential reports:

“'Sean Eldridge knows the world of big-money politics, spending $250,000 to get his candidate elected to the New York State Senate,' a narrator says [in the ad], referencing Eldridge’s support for Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk, D-Duanesburg.

The ad closes with a photo of Gibson, noting how he’s 'earned' his service and touting his four overseas combat tours as an Army commander and his receipt of a Purple Heart medal."

The attack ad comes on the heels of a profile by The New York Times of Eldridge and Hughes entitled, "Young, Rich and Relocating Yet Again in Hunt for Political Office." That article elicited delight from Republicans who believe the profile only furthers the narrative about Eldridge they're trying to make stick.

While Eldridge has yet to be officially endorsed by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, DCCC spokesperson Emily Bittner came to Eldridge's defense:

“While a lot of people talk about the needs to create jobs, Sean Eldridge has actually been doing it, investing in small businesses throughout the Hudson Valley and helping them to expand and create jobs. Sean also has a strong record promoting environmental protection and civil rights throughout New York. While some folks work tirelessly to protect tax breaks for billionaires and corporate special interests, Sean has been working to grow small businesses and fight for middle class families.”

Check out the attack ad AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Congressional Candidate Sean Eldridge Hit With Attack Ad: VIDEO" »


Facebook Co-Founder's Husband Sean Eldridge Files Papers to Run for Congress

EldridgeSean Eldridge, the husband of Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, has filed papers in New York to run for Congress, Gawker reports:

According to the filings, Eldridge, a Democratic activist and the head of an investment firm, will be seeking a House seat in New York's 19th District, currently represented by Representative Chris Gibson. Gibson, a two-term Republican and former West Point professor, was reelected in November by a margin of 53 percent to 47 percent. But the 19th District also broke for Obama; it is one of the dozens of vulnerable districts Democratic strategists are gunning for in 2014 in an effort to reclaim the House.


Chris Hughes Has 'Serious Concerns' About Mark Zuckerberg's Friend Chris Christie: VIDEO

HughesThisWeek

Facebook cofounder Chris Hughes sat down this weekend with ABC News' Abby Phillip to discuss a range of topics, including business partner Mark Zuckerberg's decision to hold a fundraiser for Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Hughes started by saying that what he loves about Zuckerberg is that he's so unpredictable, and then went on to explain that he has "serious concerns" about Christie because of the outspoken lawmaker's veto of a marriage equality bill.

"I, for one, have a lot of questions about Chris Christie, particularly because less than a year ago he vetoed a marriage equality bill in the New Jersey state legislature," he said. "For me personally, I got married to my husband last June, [and it] was just really personally frustrating."

...There are tens of thousands of couples in New Jersey that can't share their love and be recognized under the law because of that decision. I'm not a single issue voter, and I think most people aren't either, but for me personally, it would raise serious concerns about supporting someone like him.

Hughes was also asked about his plans for The New Republic, the long-running magazine he bought last year and currently edits and publishes, and according to Hughes, the only thing that will change is its scope.

"With the redesigned New Republic, we're trying to hold on to this hundred year old tradition of doing deep analysis on politics and culture. But we're also trying to broaden that and cover everything from technology to science to the world of ideas in a way that's really accessible," he said. "In a way that feels like it invites you in as a reader."

Watch Hughes speak about Christie, The New Republic and interviewing President Obama AFTER THE JUMP.

Continue reading "Chris Hughes Has 'Serious Concerns' About Mark Zuckerberg's Friend Chris Christie: VIDEO" »


Gay Donor's Dough Becomes Controversy In Texas Senate Race

PeterThielIn the NPR article about gay political donations cited earlier, journalist Ari Shapiro mentions a 1988 incident in which Democratic presidential candidate Michael Dukakis turned down a $1 million donation from gay donors. Juxtaposing that fact against today's far more gay-friendly fundraising climate showed how far the nation has come in terms of LGBT acceptance.

But that doesn't mean the States have completely evolved on the "acceptability" of LGBT dough. Just look down at Texas, where a donation from Peter Thiel (pictured) is complicating Tea Party U.S. Senate hopeful Ted Cruz's campaign.

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Cruz's opponent in the upcoming GOP primary run-off, is currently criticizing his rival for accepting $5,000 from Thiel, the openly gay PayPal co-founder and Facebook investor who has dedicated hundreds of thousands to equality causes.* As the July 31 runoff nears, Dewhurst's team is saying self-proclaimed conservative Cruz's alignment with a pro-gay businessman is "deceptive." 

"It's hypocritical and deceitful for Ted Cruz to claim to be a Tea Party Republican when his largest donor spends millions of dollars pushing the opposite side of conservative issues important to Republicans," said Mark Miner.

Former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert, a former contender in this race, also used Thiel against Cruz, citing the $250,000 Cruz took from Thiel in his failed 2009 state attorney general race. "[Cruz] received a quarter-of-a-million dollars from the gay activist who was leading the fight for gay marriage in California," Leppert said.

Thiel had no comment on this controversy, but Cruz, who once attacked Mayor Leppert for attending Dallas pride, responded by reiterating his opposition to marriage equality, one of Thiel's primary political purposes.

"Ted's record of defending marriage between one man and one woman is as clear and unwavering as his commitment to reduce the size of government and defend the Constitution come hell or high water," said a Cruz spokesperson. The candidate, however, is "grateful" for any and all support.

*(In a strange "six degrees of Facebook separation," the site reporting on this, The Texas Tribune, is edited by Evan Smith, a former deputy editor at The New Republic, the liberal magazine now owned by gay Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes. The Texas Tribune headline on this topic is "Cruz Mega-Donor is Gay, Pro-Pot Billionaire.")


News: Chris Hughes' Other Investment, Higgs Boson, Scientology, Renewal

MittSki 1NewsIcon Look, it's Mitt Romney on a jet ski, with wife Ann in the driver's seat.

1NewsIcon Latest Gallup headline: "Obama Now Leads Romney, 48% to 43%."

1NewsIcon Megan Rapinoe, a member of the U.S. women's Olympic soccer team who is a lesbian, discusses homophobia in sports: "I feel like sports in general are still homophobic, in the sense that not a lot of people are out. I feel everyone is really craving [for] people to come out. People want -- they need -- to see that there are people like me playing soccer for the good ol’ U.S. of A."

1NewsIcon In addition to donating $100,000 to fight for marriage equality in Maine, newly married Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes last year gave $500,000 to the company NationBuilder, which gives political groups the tools to launch online campaigns. Many progressive groups have worked with NationBuilder. So too has Steve Pidgeon, the Washington State attorney general candidate who fights against marriage equality. This some wonder: should Hughes ask for a NationBuilder refund?

1NewsIcon Chick-fil-A donated almost $2 million to anti-gay groups in 2010: "Though Chick-fil-A continues to deny supporting an anti-gay agenda, the company has donated over $3 million to organizations like the Family Research Council and Exodus International between 2003 and 2009. And in 2010 alone, Chick-fil-A donated over $1.9 million to anti-gay causes, more than any other year for which public records are available."

1NewsIcon In honor of the film version of Anna Karenina, Banana Republic is creating a clothing line based on the legendary novel.

TeamAussie1NewsIcon Is it unpatriotic to prefer Australia's Olympic swim hunks to America's?

1NewsIcon HBO has officially renewed True Blood for a sixth season and new drama The Newsroom for a second.

1NewsIcon What will happen within evangelical churches as younger Christians, more inclined to support gay rights, take congregations' reins? Will they leave the church, change the church or fall into ideological line?

1NewsIcon Scientists at CERN are again teasing that they've discovered the Higgs boson, also known as the God Particle: "We've discovered something which is consistent with being a Higgs."

1NewsIcon California's anti-bullying law "Seth's Law," named for Seth Walsh, a 13-year old who killed himself after being relentlessly taunted, is officially in effect statewide.

SpeakSpell1NewsIcon How many of you owned a Speak and Spell?

1NewsIcon Another burning question: what is Beyonce thinking in this picture with Kim Kardashian?

1NewsIcon Naomi Watts as Princess Diana.

1NewsIcon Katie Holmes reportedly fears Tom Cruise's Scientology buddies are following her.

1NewsIcon On a related note, even Rupert Murdoch has misgivings about Scientology.

1NewsIcon Katy Perry on her gay marriage evolution: "I came from a different mind-set growing up, and my mind has changed… My viewpoint on all these things [have changed] -- equality for women, the choice to love anyone you want."


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