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SD Mayor Candidate Carl DeMaio "Won't Push the Gay Special Agenda"

by: Brian Leubitz

Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 13:43:26 PM PDT


Activists will "turn their back" on the openly gay candidate

by Brian Leubitz

Carl DeMaio is certainly something of an enigmatic figure. He's openly gay and extremely conservative. Ok, I get that there are gay Republicans, but this one takes money from Prop 8 donors while promising them he "won't push the gay special agenda" like the current Mayor, Jerry Sanders. Sanders, as you may recall, testified in favor of Marriage Equality in the Prop 8 trial. DeMaio, well, apparently being gay is enough as it is cool to through his community under the bus to become Mayor. One example:

DeMaio apparently saw no irony in accepting the endorsement of Roger Hedgecock, the former San Diego mayor who was forced to resign after he was convicted on 13 felony charges related to campaign fraud and perjury. Ultimately, a court overturned 12 of the charges on technical grounds and let Hedgecock plead to a misdemeanor for the 13th-but the fact remains, his mayorship ended badly.

The same can't be said for Hedgecock's career as a right-wing-radio blowhard. Peddling hate and fear has paid off with national broadcast deals. The LGBT community sees the irony, especially when it comes to DeMaio's sexuality. In 1986, Hedgecock said he wouldn't march in the San Diego Pride parade because he blames gays for "the worst plague that we have had in Western culture since the Black Death in the 16th century." In 1994, Hedgecock sued Pride on behalf of "normal people" who wanted to march in the parade. In 2009, Hedgecock wrote a column that mocked the idea of homosexuality being a civil-rights issue.

DeMaio also has other supporters that won't exactly be popular at this weekend's San Diego Pride Parade. But beyond that, Demaio's partner, Johnathan Hale, has something of a checkered past. He's had a couple of different names along with a rap sheet that includes a felony conviction for burglary. And this actually matters.

It is rather interesting that DeMaio and Hale haven't received more attention. I have to imagine that if Gavin Newsom's spouse had a rap sheet, it would have come up in 2003 when he was running for Mayor. Yet, for some reason, the mainstream press in San Diego seem reluctant to cover it. If elected, Hale would likely have access to even more sensitive information than he does already.

I won't lie, when given the choice between two relatively equal candidates, LGBT status really does matter to me. Yet DeMaio's record is so odious as to become meaningless. I know that Bob Filner while not a member of the LGBT community, will do a far better job representing it.

This weekend is Pride in San Diego, and local activists will be turning their back on DeMaio.

Brian Leubitz :: SD Mayor Candidate Carl DeMaio "Won't Push the Gay Special Agenda"
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Gay Special Agenda??? (0.00 / 0)
What is a gay special agenda?  Does he mean civil rights?  Basic equality?  Is it possible that he is a closeted straight man?

It's an old thing (0.00 / 0)
There have always been a few conservatives in every group that is on the outside.  They generally believe that government can't help them because it's an insiders game and they have to take care of themselves.  But the debate needs to be about the role of government.  For example does DeMaio support same sex partner benefits for city workers?  Things like that.   It's a challenge for Filner, because it's easy to get into shorthand which isn't accurate and voters won't believe.  For example on development issues, DeMaio has loudly opposed some developments because he doesn't believe in taxpayers putting up money to help build projects.  But he also isn't for limiting what people want to build on their own property.  Same thing with civil rights.  Filner has to take the debate past the basics and turn it into a discussion about the ways society is better off because of government involvement.  DeMaio is like a Ron Paul, if you make the issue just about him, he does well, but if it's about what he will do in office, he does poorly.

DeMaio (0.00 / 0)
I should add that I think this whole "turning their back" on DeMaio is out of place.  He should be respected because all gays don't think alike and hopefully he can help force "haters" to confront their own orientation.   Frankly, he also deserves some respect for pulling it off and getting to where he is.  But more importantly, the gay community deserves the respect most other groups already have.  The issue is not about Carl DeMaio's personal choices, it's about what is best for the people of San Diego and where both candidates would take them.  In World War II, Mahatma Gahndi who was one of the greatest people who ever lived, suggested using WWII as a lever to get the British to leave India and he argued that if the Japanese won, it wouldn't matter because they never could control the country. People who were working for Indian independence decided that he was nuts and that the stakes were too high. So will the people of San Diego if they understand what DeMaio really believes.    Bob Filner needs to make clear what the differences are and what they mean to voters lives.   But I also think DeMaio deserves the respectful hearing any thinking human being deserves because it does take a lot to be an openly gay conservative Republican and to run for higher office.   JMO!  

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