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Saturday, July 31, 2004

The Moderate Manifesto

Great shot accross the bow oped in the Strib by John Gunyou, former finance commissioner under Arne Carlson.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Kerry's Speech

After getting massive amounts of gay money and time contributed to his campaign, Kerry's speech only eliptically referred to the Federal Marriage Amendment (in a reference to undermining the constitution for political gain). He did well at defusing doubts that Democrats would be able to defend this country. His speech got very weak when it went to the laundry list of government programs he was pushing to let people know that "help is on the way."

Madeline Albright, Max Cleland and Nancy Pelosi all spoke well.

The crowd was obviously very energised.

The Daily Show Jon Kerry video was better than the one presented by the Kerry campaign.

Cornyn and Box Turtles

Cornyn's speech at the Heritage Foundation where he deviated from the staff written remarks about Box Turtles is available here.

Chuck Muth from Citizen Outreach comments:

CLARIFICATION

In the Jon Stewart segment on the federal marriage amendment on last week’s “The Daily Show,” Stewart made mention of a quote by Sen. John Cornyn regarding marriage and “box turtles.” For the record, Sen. Cornyn never actually said this. It was part of a written draft for remarks to be delivered in a speech at the Heritage Foundation. However, Sen. Cornyn objected to the reference when he read the speech prepared by a staffer and deleted it from his actual remarks.

Kudos to Sen. Cornyn. But we also hope he took the idiot staffer who wrote the speech and who thought the box turtle analogy was not only appropriate for a United States senator, but funny as well, to the woodshed.


Verticle Hold has a good illustrated summary of the Daily Show Episode.

Laptop Lobbyist Challenges Chuck Muth to a Dual

From today's Chuck Muth's News and Views:

OOPS...GUESS WE HIT ANOTHER RAW NERVE

In yesterday's News & Views, we took our friends over at Laptoplobbyist.com to task for taking Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell to task (using a relatively inoffensive comparison to dogs in the process) for what they called his lack of "party loyalty." We noted that the senator took an oath to defend the CONSTITUTION, not the Republican Party. In return, Laptop’s executive director, Chris Carmouche, got his tights all up in a twist and he fired off this angry note to us:

“Mr. Muth: I will debate you sir anywhere anytime in any forum, if you are enough of a man to take up the challenge. Lack of a moral compass, which you seem to exhibit, is a stain on the conservative movement and this country. If you accept my challenge, I’ll bring the Formula 409.”

Yeah, whatever. I’m surprised he didn’t “double dare” me.

Lost in the kerfuffle (for all you Jimmy Taranto fans), however, was a passage in a letter Laptop’s founder, Carter Clews, sent to Sen. Campbell suggesting that maybe it’s the DOGS who should be offended for being compared to politicians...not the other way around. Here’s the case Mr. Clews made:

* Dogs stand by their friends - politicians stand up their friends.
* Dogs are unfailingly loyal through thick and thin - politicians feign loyalty when their fat's in the fire.
* Dogs wag their tails when you throw them a bone - politicians throw you a bone when you wag your tale.
* Dogs cannot tell a lie - politicians will not tell the truth.
* Dogs can be housebroken - politicians break the house.
* Dogs are always happy to see you - politicians are always happy to be seen.
* Dogs don't care if you're rich or not - politicians don't care if you're not rich.
* Dogs love to go for a ride - politicians love to take you on one.
* Dogs protect you from your enemies - politicians protect your enemies from you.
* Dogs love much and leave too soon - politicians love little and stay too long.
* Dogs ask nothing and give all - politicians take all and give nothing.
* Dogs always remember the sound of your voice - politicians rarely remember to return a call.

While we can argue with Mr. Clews over the "party loyalty" point, it's hard to argue with THAT!

That’s it for today. I’m outta here. Gotta head over to Wal-Mart and pick me up a new moral compass.


Go get 'em Chuck.

Jerry Falwell Claims to be giving Invocation at the Republican National Convention

John Aravosis on Americablog reports on an email he got from Mel White, Falwell's former speechwriter, who has since come out as gay, and who started the Soulforce Ministry.

Hi friend,
Jerry Falwell just announced at Thomas Road Baptist Church that he would be giving the invocation on opening night at the Republican National Convention in NYC. I was stunned.

What more evidence do we need that IF George Bush is re-elected, he will have no choice but to support Fundamentalist Christian goals for this nation, its courts and its Constitution?!

In his second term, WITH ALL THE OTHER TRAGIC CONSEQUENCES OF HIS RE-ELECTION, Bush could cripple our struggle for civil rights for sexual and gender minorities. We must not let that happen...


I contacted Soulforce's director of communications about this. She verified this email, but said it was not written as part of Soulforce.


From: Eva Young [mailto:eva@usucceed.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 28, 2004 4:32 PM
To: Laura@soulforce.org
Subject: Was this actually written by Mel White?

Hi Laura:

Eva Young here - I write a weblog covering GLBT politics among other things. Americablog quotes the following from an email from Mel White.

Eva

Delivered-To: usucceed.com-eva@usucceed.com
Reply-To:
From: "Laura at Soulforce"
To: "'Eva Young'"
Subject: RE: Was this actually written by Mel White?
Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2004 08:04:32 -0400

Dear Eva,

I had a family crisis yesterday, and spent the afternoon in the emergency room. I am sorry not to get back to you.

Yes, it was written "personally" to someone, and was not part of Soulforce, Inc . So I can answer you as a party who has heard this from Mel, but I am not acting as the Communications Director of Soulforce in this capacity.

There were two other people with him who have verified this.

Laura Montgomery Rutt


Developing...... It will be good to get Republican National Committee confirmation on this.

Laptop Lobbyist has their undies in a bunch over GOP Senators Voting No on Cloture on Hate Amendment

Laptoplobbyist.com Demands Removal of Seante Chairmen
by Christopher Carmouche / Category ::
Posted on Jul 18th (Sun) 2004 @ 03:45 PM
Rating: 5/5 Votes: 1 Rate: 1 2 3 4 5

Conservative Activist Group Calls on Frist to Discipline Six
Who Voted Against Marriage Amendment

Christopher Carmouche -- Executive Director of Laptoplobbyist.com, a
conservative activist group – is calling on Majority Leader Bill Frist to discipline
the six Republicans who voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment by removing
those who chair senate committees from their respective chairmanships. The six
include Ben Nighthorse Campbell of Colorado, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, Susan
Collins of Maine, John McCain of Arizona, Olympia Snowe of Maine, and John Sununu of
New Hampshire.

"The Republican leadership could only muster 48 votes on the Federal Marriage
Amendment," said Carmouche, “and three of those were Democrats. Republicans let the
most liberal members of the Party chair their committees. That is a cruel betrayal
of the folks who have supported the GOP in the belief that they were voting for
conservative government. Bill Frist should see that these defectors are removed
from positions of power – and he should do it right now – today. You can't
housebreak a dog if you wait to punish him until the week after he's messed up the
rug."

Carmouche said that the Federal Marriage Amendment is one of the most crucial
issues ever brought before the U.S. Senate. "The trashing of marriage that began in
Massachusetts can't be forced on other states. Opponents of this amendment know very
well that the danger of that happening is very real. If the GOP leadership doesn't
discipline these people, a lot of social conservatives are going to stay home in
November."


These characters are just reinforcing the "conservative equals bigot" stereotype. Chuck Muth - a true conservative in the Barry Goldwater tradition - blasts them.

I DO SOLEMNLY SWEAR...

The folks over at Laptoplobbyist.com are blasting away at Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Colorado Republican, and the five other GOP senators who voted against cloture, thus killing the Federal Marriage Amendment a little over a week ago. Carter Clews, founder of the organization, berates Campbell for his “lack of party loyalty.” Sorry...but Clews is clueless.

When senators are sworn in, they swear their loyalty to defending the Constitution...not to the Republican Party. Folks like Clews can criticize the senator for any number of legitimate philosophical reasons for voting the way he did (we, of course, support his vote), but “party loyalty” sure as hell isn’t one of them. At the risk of injecting a worn-out cliché, isn’t that how the Nazis got started?




Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Republicans Using Gay Marriage Issue Selectively

From the Washington Post:

"It's a difficult issue," said Sen. Robert F. Bennett (Utah), chief deputy whip for Senate Republicans. There is a "widespread feeling among some Democrats as well as Republicans that traditional marriage is under attack," he said, but members "don't want to be seen as gay bashers."


Exactly. And this is the way to fight these kind of bills - is calling them gaybashing on the house or senate floor.

Many Republicans and their allies among Christian groups said they hope to turn a certain legislative loss into a political gain in this fall's elections by using the issue to mobilize conservative voters to turn out for Bush and congressional candidates in critical races.

Under this win-by-losing strategy, GOP leaders hope to reassure conservatives that the party stands with them without angering moderates who are reluctant to amend the Constitution or target gays. Use of the issue would be confined to areas where it would do the most good.

"This is just the beginning of the process," said Gary Cass, of the Center for Reclaiming America, an advocacy group founded by the Rev. D. James Kennedy, a Florida evangelist. "We need to know who's with us and who's against us."


That's why what is important is to expose anti-gay nonsense coming from both parties. EMILY's List Candidates Inez Tenenbaum and Stephanie Herseth support the FMA. And I keep on hearing why gay groups should use Choice as a litmus test for their endorsements. To me that makes no sense (even though I am pro-choice on abortion). I do NOT consider abortion to be a gay issue one way or another.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Missouri Stupid Party

Anti-Gay GOP Release going after Nancy Farmer.....

For Immediate Release February 10, 2004
Contact: Paul Sloca (573) 636-3146 or (573) 619-6575

Farmer Staunch Defender of Gay Marriage

Democrat's record reveals liberal agenda on issue

JEFFERSON CITY – Democrat Nancy Farmer on Tuesday began her candidacy for U.S. Senate by saying: "It's time to let Missouri voters know about my record."

We agree. So let’s begin.

While most Missourians have grave concerns over the recent Massachusetts court ruling legalizing gay marriage, Farmer is feeling right at home.

In a 1996 Project Vote Smart survey, Nancy Farmer was asked the following question: Do you believe that the Missouri government should recognize same-sex marriages?

Farmer’s answer: Yes.

"Nancy Farmer’s pro-gay marriage stance shows just how out of touch she is with the vast majority of Missourians," said Paul Sloca, communications director for the Missouri Republican Party. "While Farmer’s pro-gay marriage stance might play well in a Massachusetts Senate race, voters in Missouri are wondering what’s in store for their state if Farmer has her way in Washington."

During her time in the Missouri Statehouse, Farmer could be counted on to vote against mainstream values and with the extreme liberal wing of her party.

In May 1996, Farmer was one of only 12 state representatives to vote against a defense of marriage amendment that recognized marriage as between only a man and a woman. The amendment to protect traditional marriage passed 143-12.

"At a time when traditional marriage is under assault, can Missouri voters really count on Nancy Farmer to stand up for them?" Sloca said. ``The answer is clearly `No.’’’

-30-

Side Cho at the Democratic National Convention

Comedian Margaret Cho was uninvited to the HRC sponsored Unity Event. HRC has gotten lots of criticism from within the Gay Community over this. Was this their reward from the Kerry Campaign?

MEDIA ADVISORY from the Human Rights Campaign
1640 Rhode Island Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20036-3278
E-mail: hrc@h...
http://www.hrc.org
_________________________________

For Immediate Release
Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Contact: Steven Fisher
Phone: (202) 216-1547
Cell: (202) 431-7608

Contact: Mark Shields
Phone: (202) 216-1564
Cell: (202) 716-1637

HRC PRESIDENT CHERYL JACQUES TO SPEAK AT DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION

SCHEDULED TO SPEAK AT BETWEEN 6 AND 6:20 EDT


What: HRC President Cheryl Jacques is scheduled to address the
Democratic National Convention. The Human Rights
Campaign is the only gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender organization
honored with a convention address.

When: Wednesday, July 28, 2004, between 6 and 6:20 p.m. EDT

Where: FleetCenter, Boston, Mass.

Webcast: At www.cspan.org

About HRC: The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national
lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization
with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress,
provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure
that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in
the community.

- 30 -

Anti-Gay Democrats

Some of these supported by Emily's List - most notably:

Inez Tenenbaum - running for Senate in South Carolina and Stephanie Herseth running for congress in South Dakota are both supporters of the Federal Marriage Amendment.

Ben Chandler, Kentucky - who recently won a special election also supports the FMA and voted in favor of the Court Stripping bill last week.