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Commissioner Kevin Beckner Rips Hillsborough County's Anti-Gay Pride Law Before Board Repeals It: VIDEO


As I mentioned in my previous post, Tampa's Hillsborough County yesterday voted 7-0 yesterday to repeal a hideous discriminatory statute that banned recognition of Gay Pride by the county.

Gay Hillsborough County Commissioner Kevin Beckner ripped those who put it in place a new one yesterday with a powerful speech that earned him a rousing ovation.

Said Beckner, holding up a copy of the Constitution: "What does it say to a community when its own government sanctions discrimination against a class of its  citizens? Does it give authority to others to discriminate against their fellow human beings? What about our children? Our children who go to school every single day that are subject to bullying simply because who they are as human beings. Does it give children the authority to bully and to put down their fellow classmates because government has said it's ok to do so? Ladies and gentleman, that is the real cost that this policy has to this community."

Watch his remarks, AFTER THE JUMP...

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South Beach 90's Drag Legend Wanda Shot, Killed in Tampa

Anthony Jerome Lee, a legendary South Beach drag queen known as Wanda, was shot and killed in Tampa on Tuesday, the Miami New Times reports:

WandaShe was at one point perhaps the most polarizing and controversial figure in South Beach night life. A master at throwing shade and saying whatever was on her mind, Wanda still occupied a special place in Florida's drag community; a fact made sadly apparent when she was gunned down at the agoe of 49 on Tuesday in an apparently random and still unsolved act of violence.

Wanda, whose real name is Anthony Jerome Lee, was visiting a friends house in Tampa. She was busy cooking dinner when she heard a knock at the door. When she answered she was greeted by five bullets.

The case remains a mystery, and police believe Wanda may have been a victim of mistaken identity. So far, a car that they believe the murderer may have used to escape has been recovered.

Mystery Woman in Petraeus Investigation is Named

A mystery woman who told the FBI that she had been receiving threatening emails from Petraeus biographer Paula Broadwell is a social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, and a friend of the Holly and David Petraeus.

The NYT reports:

KelleyThe woman, Jill Kelley, 37, is “a very well-known person of influence in the Tampa community,” active in community organizations that support military causes, according to the friend. Tampa is the home of the military’s Central Command, which Mr. Petraeus headed before serving in Afghanistan and then as C.I.A. director. It was during the Petraeuses’ time in Tampa that they became friends with Ms. Kelley and her husband, Dr. Scott Kelley.

In a statement released Sunday night, Ms. Kelley and her husband did not address their involvement in the investigation that ultimately led to Mr. Petraeus’s resignation on Friday from the C.I.A. after admitting that he had had an extramarital affair.

 The Kelleys said that they had been friends with Mr. Petraeus “and his family for over five years.”

“We respect his and his family’s privacy, and want the same for us and our three children,” the family said in a statement.

In related news, Politico looks at Broadwell's access to classified information:

In a speech last month at the University of Denver, Broadwell said that the CIA at one point was holding prisoners at an annex near the consulate, and that the assault may have been an effort to free those prisoners. "I don't know if a lot of you heard this, but the CIA annex had actually—had taken a couple of Libyan militia members prisoner and they think that the attack on the consulate was an effort to try to get these prisoners back. So, that's still being vetted," she said, according to a video of the Denver event posted online and first reported by the Israeli media outlet Arutz Sheva.

Later in her remarks, Broadwell, said some of her information had come from a Fox News report, but it does not appear to have included that detail, according to Foreign Policy. The CIA has denied holding any prisoners at Benghazi.

Report: Broadwell's Threatening Emails Sparked Petraeus' Downfall [tlrd]
Did CIA Ask FBI To Investigate Outsider David Petraeus? VIDEO [tlrd]

Gay Republicans, Young Conservatives Take Out Full Page Marriage Equality Ad in Tampa Tribune


Visitors to the Republican National Convention may catch a full page ad taken out by  Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry and Log Cabin Republicans on Wednesday if they're reading the Tampa Tribune, LCR reports:

The full-page color ad, featuring photos of same-sex couples and their families, emphasizes that the freedom to marry is fully consistent with principles valued by conservatives: freedom, personal responsibility, and the importance of family. The ad comes in the wake of the party's extreme stance on marriage in its draft platform, which includes support for a federal constitutional amendment banning the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.  Tony Perkins, the president of the anti-gay Family Research Council, authored the marriage plank, which is expected to be ratified at the convention.

"Gay or straight, Republicans are united in the belief that strong families are critical to a free society," said R. Clarke Cooper, Executive Director of the Log Cabin Republicans. "As fellow conservatives, Log Cabin Republicans actually agree with Tony Perkins about the importance of family values. The difference is, we believe that the freedom to marry is directly in line with the core ideals and principles of the Republican Party - less government, more individual freedom, personal responsibility and the importance of family."

Check the full ad out, AFTER THE JUMP...

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GOProud's 'Homocon': Dana Loesch Plus A Fetish Club Plus 'Christ-Haters' Equals A Swell Time (VIDEO) (UPDATED)



The GOProud folk descending on Central Florida for the Republican National Convention next week have selected a venue for their famed Homocon party, and seem to have solidified the "Special Guest" list.

The venue: The Honey Pot, the premier fetish club in Ybor City -- a little burg in Tampa known primarily for its nightlife, and for drawing booze-mad college kids from their campuses in St. Pete, Tampa, and Lakeland.

The "Special Guest" list includes: the American Conservative Union's David Keene. Grover Norquist. Larry O'Connor, of Breitbart. Will Cain. S.E. Cupp. Margaret Hoover. The long-suffering Richard Grenell. Bigshot Tea Partier Amy Kremer. The very-fun Mary Matalin, the sourpuss CNN commentator, famously married to ideological opponent James Carville. And, for some reason, Dana Loesch.

Dana Loesch, the editor-in-chief of Andrew Breitbart's BigJournalism.com, is notably unfriendly to gay people. AFTER THE JUMP, listen to a squirm-inducing clip from Dana's radio show in which she bullies a young, self-identified Christian woman who calls to express her support of marriage equality, and ends up teling to the poor girl that she must, therefore, "hate Christ." The logical contortions Ms. Loesch must perform to arrive at this conclusion are, I think you'll agree, most impressive. (Or indicative of almost incapacitating idiocy.)

Listening to the clip, it's impossible to imagine this woman glad-handing gays in Ybor City, but apparently that's what'll happen. Salud, GOProud: You make crazy happen.

There have been several online reports that Homocon will feature a Paul Ryan lookalike in an upstairs VIP room, but GOProud doesn't mention that in its advertisements, and I can't find any announcement to that effect on the Honey Pot's Facebook page. I called GOProud to ask about it this morning, but it seems there's nobody manning the phones on the weekends.

Again -- to get your nerves jangled, listen to Loesch AFTER THE JUMP ...

(UPDATE: As I suspected, there will be no Paul Ryan lookalike at Homocon. Also, despite multiple press notices to the contrary, turns out Honey Pot isn't a fetish club at all.) 

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How Many RNC Activists Will Take A Shot In The Dark?


Via JMG comes this flier from a gay bathhouse in Tampa offering some deals for GOP delegates in town for the Republican National Convention.

Meanwhile, The Daily Bleach has some other scintillating fliers being handed out ahead of the convention, including an advert from an establishment called Dwight’s Erotique Cabaret, where they patriotically celebrate "American muscle".

Check it out AFTER THE JUMP.

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