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Thursday, June 15, 2006

Lloydletta's Nooz Talks with Ember Reichgott Junge

At a recent event, Ember Reichgott Junge told me that she had taken the public position in favor of including gays in the institution of marriage. I followed up with her on this and some other issues.

While at the legislature, Ember voted against the state Defense of Marriage Act. This was when she was a statewide candidate for Attorney General. I asked Ember whether Hatch used this issue against her, and she said he did not. In 1994, Hatch tried unsuccessfully to use John Marty's support of domestic partner benefits against him in the DFL governor primary.

Ember also believes gay people should be able to serve openly in the military. Ember did say she will be adding these issues to her website, but they are not currently there.

Ember has a press release on her website commenting on Senate Federal Bachmann Amendment vote:

Gay Marriage Amendment Vote
Wednesday, June 07, 2006

I congratulate the 48 senators who today stood as a blockade against those who would undermine human rights in favor of discrimination, ignorance, and bigotry. This was a victory for compassion and realism over ideology.

I see a future in which we treat each other with respect and dignity. This is a future in which our public policies honor the social bonds that individuals enter into voluntarily.

When so many vital issues remain to be addressed in this Congress, the Republican majority in Congress has decided to push its conservative ideological agenda. They have failed in Iraq, failed to provide the health care reform they promised, and failed to meaningfully address the energy and environmental challenges.

I am not optimistic that today’s vote will persuade Republican leaders to drop their strategy to sidestep the real issues. I am very optimistic that new Democratic majorities will be elected this fall to put America's real agenda back on track.

Ember's campaign has been criticized for push-polling. I asked Ember about those concerns. Ember said this was a standard messaging poll, and was handled by Celinda Lake, who follows the AAPOR standards against push polling.

Ember's campaign team has impressed Roll call. Like Mike Erlandson, so far, she has been running an inside the beltway focused campaign.