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    February 28, 2008

    Obama goes after Hillary's gay vote

    Posted by: Chris

    Obama_lgbt_ad As the crucial Ohio and Texas primaries loom next Tuesday, Barack Obama has been making aggressive plays for the groups that have gone for Hillary Clinton in previous contests, including the working class, women, Hispanics and -- now it appears -- gay and lesbian voters.

    The Obama campaign has purchased ads in gay publications in Columbus, Cleveland, Dallas and Houston. The advertisements go with more of an inspirational message:

    While we have come a long way since the Stonewall Riots in 1969, we still have a lot of work to do. Too often, the issue of LGBT rights is exploited by those seeking to divide us. But at its core, this issue is about who we are as Americans. It's about whether this nation is going to live up to its founding promise of equality by treating all its citizens with dignity and respect.

    (Click on the ad to see it full size.)

    The campaign also released an open letter today that delves into much greater specifics, outlining Obama's support for a wide array of federal gay and transgender rights legislation, including the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act, the Uniting American Families Act, federal employee domestic partner benefits, as well as full repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act and Don't Ask Don't Tell.

    The Obama letter emphasizes his support for full repeal of DOMA -- Hillary backs only half-repeal -- saying, "While some say we should repeal only part of the law, I believe we should get rid of that statute altogether. Federal law should not discriminate in any way against gay and lesbian couples, which is precisely what DOMA does."

    On UAFA, Obama adds, "I have worked to improve the Uniting American Families Act so we can afford same-sex couples the same rights and obligations as married couples in our immigration system." It's an intriguing claim, since Obama (like Clinton) has not yet signed on as a co-sponsor of UAFA, although both checked off as supporting it on the Human Rights Campaign's candidate questionnaire.

    Perhaps the folks at Immigration Equality can shed some light on the work Obama has done to improve UAFA's chances of passage.

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    1. Lavi Soloway on Feb 28, 2008 1:09:11 PM:

      Maybe by "worked to improve" he means flagged the "fraud" issue so that a new version could address that "issue" and it would be more easily passed. This is not really working on it, but maybe there have been meetings we have not been privy to? I'm excited that he might now be turning resources to fine tuning this legislation so it will pass. Actually, I'm just thrilled that he's championing the legislation, which is itself historic. But you are right, Chris, questions remain to be answered.

    1. Irene on Mar 7, 2009 1:49:44 PM:

      Oh c'mon you Obamamania folks. Get it through your heads that Obama will NEVER vote for equality for gays and lesbians to marry. I am sitting in exile with my non US partner in Germany because of lily livered people like Obama, who as a product of a mixed race marriage, should understand that the insidious laws against gays and lesbians marrying use the same argumentation as those preventing blacks and whites from marrying -- his "folks" you know. So if we could just get this "fraud" issue worked out . . .
      I know countless heteros who have used marriage to get residency. Do you really think we would go through all the pain and suffering we have done, sold all our goods and property, using FRAUD?
      When will gays and lesbians wake up that a Rosa Parks he ain't. Otherwise he would have stepped up to the front of the bus BEFORE the election.
      No, at age 70, residency for my beloved won't happen in my lifetime.
      Glad to be out of the US energy field. Good Bye America, and good luck.

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