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    December 18, 2007

    The 'other Dem' gets a gay nod

    Posted by: Chris

    John_and_stuart_talk_to_john_edward It's not just in the mainstream media that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have hogged almost all the coverage. Most of the attention in the gay press and blogs has been focused on the two Democratic primary frontrunners, with nary a mention of John Edwards, the candidate in third in Iowa and most national surveys.

    When the spotlight has fallen elsewhere, it's either been for also-rans who are prone to gay gaffes (Bill Richardson) or who are especially good on gay issues (Dennis Kucinich and even Mike Gravel).

    Edwards, the 2004 vice presidential nominee, has barely registered on the political gaydar. His only prominent gay endorsement has been from former Clintonite David Mixner, and that was based on the former North Carolina senator's vehement war opposition and commitment to fight poverty. Now Edwards can count at least one more prominent gay nod, from the New Hampshire Freedom to Marry Coalition.

    The choice is a curious one, considering Edwards hasn't been much of a factor in New Hampshire, trailing both Clinton and Obama in the state by significant margins. A poll released last week by the Concord Monitor showed the frontrunners locked at 31 and 32 percentage points, respectively, with Edwards at half that amount.

    Given that he's not appreciably better on any gay rights issue than the two more likely to win, then why the endorsement from the New Hampshire Freedom to Marry Coalition?

    "We took a long look at all of the candidates, we met with many of them, and in our judgment, John Edwards's sincere commitment to battling discrimination and ensuring equal rights for every American is unparalleled," the group's executive director, state representative Mo Baxley, said in the release.

    "He and his wonderful wife, Elizabeth, have spent their entire lives fighting for those without a voice and standing up for what is right. John Edwards will be the kind of president we can trust to stand up for everyday Americans."

    The N.H. FTM hasn't posted anything yet on its website about the Edwards nod, so reading between the lines it appears that Edwards' populism -- "fighting for those without a voice" -- won the day for the group and its E.D., a former state rep, who also endorsed Edwards personally.

    The other curiosity, of course, is that Edwards opposes gay marriage and until the HRC-Logo debate cited his own religious views and conservative North Carolina upbringing as policy justifications. For the New Hampshire "Freedom to Marry" Coalition to back him over Obama, when Edwards favors only a half-repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act and Obama favors full repeal, is passing strange.


    Gnw_lighthouse_logosmall For a complete news summary, click or bookmark: gaynewswatch.com/demprimary



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    1. Geena the Transgirl on Dec 18, 2007 5:23:42 PM:

      Never underestimate the persuasive power of a good lawyer. Or maybe John Edwards took a Victory Fund Candidate Course.

    1. Andoni on Dec 19, 2007 9:15:29 AM:

      This is why they endorsed Edwards.....and the clue is in their statement "He and his wonderful wife...." His wife Elizabeth endorsed gay marriage even though he 's "not quite there yet."

      I've met with Elizabeth and she will tell you her position and then tell you that John can't take that position because it is still politically suicidal. So with a nod and a wink, you get the message that John could be for same sex marriage, but can't say it -- and know that she is definitely lobbying him. Now this dual message approach isn't exactly how I want a presidential candidate to operate, but both Hillary and Barrack oppose gay marriage, and as far as I know I haven't heard either of their spouses relay a message different than that.

      Elizabeth and John are employing the age old strategy in dealing with hot gay issues. You say one thing in public, but in private reassure gays what you really think. The only difference here is that instead of telling us in private, it has graduated to telling us through his wife.

      Is this an improvement over the days of old? I don't think so, but it was certainly enough to snare the NH Freedom to Marry Coaltion, hook, line, and sinker.

    1. Citizen Crain on Dec 19, 2007 9:32:10 AM:

      Is anyone else having trouble posting comments? I think there's a problem on the blog right now.

    1. Double T on Dec 19, 2007 2:19:15 PM:


      Giving a "thumbs up" to gay marriage is the express lane to political ruin.

      If I were running for office, I'd sure as hell avoid the subject.

    1. Monster Beats Sale on Nov 26, 2011 3:08:55 AM:

      If I were running for office, I'd sure as hell avoid the subject.

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