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Monday, August 20, 2007

The HRC/LOGO Gay Presidential Debate

The Daily Show really nails Melissa Etheridge's efforts to make this debate all about her.

New Hampshire Public Radio Interviewed Joe Salmonese from the Human Rights Campaign and Patrick Sammon from Log Cabin Republicans about the Logo/HRC debate.

Audio here.

Dale Carpenter has his take on the debate:

Bill Richardson. On substance, Richardson shined. Especially impressive was his emphasis on actual accomplishments over rhetoric. After the Clinton presidency, many of us are unimpressed by promises; we want results. When it comes to actual accomplishments, Richardson has done more for gay equality than the other Democrats.

I wasn't troubled by Richardson’s suggestion that homosexuality is a choice since it seemed that, in context, he was trying to say only that people should be free to be gay. He was also correct, by the way, that we really don’t know what causes someone to have a particular sexual orientation. For this bit of honesty, he was flayed by pundits. He did seem tired and listless, so he lost badly in the eyes of those who demand flash and charm.

There was a huge ruckus over Richardson's statement about whether homosexuality is a choice. The science is not clear on this topic, and Richardson was simply pointing that out.

His comments on Hillary Clinton:

Clinton was the cleverest of the lot. She both defended and distanced herself from her husband’s two signature anti-gay acts, DADT and DOMA. She painted DADT as an improvement on what came before, which it was not. She was correct that DOMA helped stave off a federal constitutional amendment in 2004, but that was not the rationale when it passed in 1996. These answers were dishonest.

Carpenter concludes:

All of the Democrats are better on gay issues than any of the Republicans. But we have many times seen these paper commitments decompose in the slightest heat. This presidential forum left us little reason to believe it will be any different this time.

He also comments on Obama and Edwards. His thoughtful review is well worth reading.