Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Two Videos On How Certain Democrats Reacted To The Legitimate Aspirations Of The LGBT Community


In 1995 Bernie was a Member of the House... and so was Duke Cunningham. In fact, one of the reasons we started DWT was to help focus attention of Cunningham and a gaggle of other corrupt California Republicans, none of whom are still in office... Richard Pombo, Jerry Lewis, Buck McKeon, Gary Miller, John Doolittle, Dan Lungren, Jim Rogan, David Dreier, Elton Gallegly, Wally Herger-- all gone, all flushed down the toilet. Anyway, in the video above ole Duke is being harshly called out on the carpet by Bernie for disparaging gay men and women in the military. Bernie seems angry; Cunningham seems defiant and uncontrite for his ugly bigotry against American fighting men and women.

A decade later, Hillary hadn't evolved yet. She was demonstrating some of the tendencies that made her such a successful president of the Wellesley College Young Republicans-- not just a member or the treasurer or the vice president... she was the president. And in 2004 she was still taking umbrage-- as she gave the Republicans some nice homophobic talking points they could use to deny marriage equality. Duke Cunningham still hadn't be convicted of taking $2.4 million in bribery (and a long list of other felonies) and was still serving in Congress when Hillary made this speech-- and must have been so proud of her-- although he went to prison soon after. The video down below is Hillary telling her colleagues how to oppose marriage equality without sounding like a complete homophobe... which wasn't really a good idea in New York, not even in 2004.

In the middle of January, I got an e-mail from her about what a great champion of gay rights she is. "Howard," she wrote, "in 2011, I went to Geneva to tell the UN that 'gay rights are human rights, once and for all.' We’ve seen so much progress since I made that speech, particularly with last year’s landmark Supreme Court decision on marriage equality. But there’s still so much at stake for LGBT families in America and around the world, and we need our next president to keep us moving forward. I’ve laid out an ambitious plan to advance LGBT rights in our country." But an examination of her LGBT record, wouldn't make her nearly so attractive to gay voters, although there are a certain subset of gay men who worship tragic women. When it became clear Bill was being unfaithful with other women, those gays started treating her like she was Judy Garland. PolitiFact looked into her flip flops on LGBT issues last summer.
On the day that the U.S. Supreme Court was poised to hear oral arguments about same-sex marriage April 28, Hillary Clinton changed her "H" logo to rainbow-colored and tweeted: "Every loving couple & family deserves to be recognized & treated equally under the law across our nation. #LoveMustWin #LoveCantWait."

Clinton came out in support of same-sex marriage in 2013 after more than a decade of opposing it. But her views are particularly in the spotlight now that she is a presidential candidate.

We decided to put Clinton’s statements about same-sex marriage on our Flip-O-Meter, which measures whether a candidate has changed their views without making a value judgment about such flips. We found that as public opinion shifted toward support for same-sex marriage, so did Clinton.

She has had plenty of company among members of her own party to change their stance on same-sex marriage. In 2012, we gave Obama a Full Flop when he announced his support for same-sex marriage.

Currently about three dozen states allow same-sex marriage. The outcome of the decision, expected in June, could mean either that same-sex marriage will become legal in all states or that some states will institute new bans on same-sex marriage. (A spokesman for Clinton’s campaign declined to comment for this Flip-O-Meter item.)

Clinton’s statements during her 2000 Senate race

In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act, a law that defined federal marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

Hillary Clinton would face questions about same-sex marriage starting with her 2000 campaign for Senate. Let’s look at the highlights of her statements between 1999 and 2015 in a timeline:

December 1999: Clinton told a group of gay contributors at a fundraiser that she was against the "don't ask, don't tell" military policy signed by her husband.

The New York Times reported that Clinton spokesman Howard Wolfson said she supported the Defense of Marriage Act but added that "same-sex unions should be recognized and that same-sex unions should be entitled to all the rights and privileges that every other American gets."

January 2000: At a news conference in White Plains, Clinton said, "Marriage has got historic, religious and moral content that goes back to the beginning of time, and I think a marriage is as a marriage has always been, between a man and a woman. But I also believe that people in committed gay marriages, as they believe them to be, should be given rights under the law that recognize and respect their relationship."

April 2000: Clinton again expressed support for civil unions. "I have supported the kind of rights and responsibilities that are being extended to gay couples in Vermont," she said.

July 2004: Clinton spoke on the Senate floor against a proposed federal amendment to ban same-sex marriage. (The amendment ultimately failed.) Though she opposed it, she said that she believed that marriage was "a sacred bond between a man and a woman."

However, she said she took "umbrage at anyone who might suggest that those of us who worry about amending the Constitution are less committed to the sanctity of marriage, or to the fundamental bedrock principle that exists between a man and a woman."

October 2006: Clinton told a group of gay elected officials that she would support same-sex marriage in New York if a future governor and Legislature chose to enact such a law.

"I support states making the decision," she said.

As a 2008 presidential candidate

In 2007, all the presidential contenders except for longshot candidates-- both Democrats and GOP-- were against same-sex marriage, the New York Times reported. So were the majority of Americans, polls showed.

May 2007: In a questionnaire for the Human Rights Campaign in 2007, Clinton backed away from the Defense of Marriage Act:

"I support repealing the provision of DOMA that may prohibit the federal government from providing benefits to people in states that recognize same-sex marriage."

In response to a question about whether marriage should be made legally available to two committed adults of the same sex, Clinton marked that she was "opposed" though she stated she supported civil unions.

August 2007: In a Democratic primary debate sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign and LOGO Network (a gay-oriented TV station) Clinton was asked "What is at the heart of your opposition to same-sex marriage?"

Clinton replied: "Well, I prefer to think of it as being very positive about civil unions. You know, it’s a personal position. How we get to full equality is the debate we’re having, and I am absolutely in favor of civil unions with full equality of benefits, rights, and privileges."

As a 2016 presidential candidate

As Clinton got ready for her second presidential bid, she again modified her position.

March 2013: After leaving her position as secretary of state, she announced her support for same-sex marriage in a video with the Human Rights Campaign on March 18, 2013.

"LGBT Americans are our colleagues, our teachers, our soldiers, our friends, our loved ones. And they are full and equal citizens, and they deserve the rights of citizenship. That includes marriage. That’s why I support marriage for lesbian and gay couples. I support it personally and as a matter of policy and law, embedded in a broader effort to advance equality and opportunity for LGBT Americans and all Americans." 
The comments put her in line with other Democrats at the time who were mentioned as potential 2016 presidential contenders, including Vice President Joe Biden, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. Obama had announced his support for same-sex marriage in May 2012.

June 2013: Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton issued a joint statement about the U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning the Defense of Marriage Act. The congratulatory note didn’t mention that Bill Clinton had signed the law back in 1996: "the Court recognized that discrimination towards any group holds us all back in our efforts to form a more perfect union."

June 2014: NPR’s Terry Gross grilled Clinton about her past positions’ on gay marriage in what led to a testy exchange. Gross tried to get Clinton to explain if she had truly changed her stance or if the shifting political landscape made it possible for her to announce her support.

At one point Gross asked, "Would you say your view evolved since the '90s or that the American public evolved, allowing you to state your real view?"

Clinton replied: "I think I'm an American. (Laughing) And I think we have all evolved, and it's been one of the fastest, most sweeping transformations."

April 2015: On the day of the Supreme Court hearing oral arguments about same-sex marriage bans in a handful of states in April, Clinton changed her "H" logo to rainbow-colored and tweeted a message of support: "Every loving couple & family deserves to be recognized & treated equally under the law across our nation. #LoveMustWin #LoveCantWait."

Our conclusion

Clinton opposed same-sex marriage as a candidate for the Senate, while in office as a senator, and while running for president in 2008. She expressed her support for civil unions starting in 2000 and for the rights’ of states to set their own laws in favor of same-sex marriage in 2006.

As polls showed that a majority of Americans supported same-sex marriage, Clinton’s views changed, too. She announced her support for same-sex marriage in March 2013.

It’s up to voters to decide how they feel about her changed stance, but on same-sex marriage we give Clinton a Full Flop.
Is she better than Trumpf or Cruz or Rubio or any of the garbage candidates the GOP is offering? Of course she is! But is she any better than the same old transactional hack politician that is rapidly turning Americans off to our whole system of democracy? No, she isn't. Come November, if she wins the nomination, she'll be the lesser of two evils. But still evil. During the primary, though, there is still an opportunity to vote without picking evil. If you'd like to help Bernie's campaign, you can do so here. The person in this video has evolved since she campaigned for Richard Nixon, since she campaigned for Barry Goldwater, since she campaigned for Nelson Rockefeller. She evolved on something else this week too! She's finally for the public option for health care. Luckily Bernie is pushing her.

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At 9:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stop lying about Hillary & LGBT rights!

LGBT rights are so much more than just marriage!

At 9:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Before Bill was in office the military had a blanket ban on gays in the military. At recruitment stations they would ask if you were LGBT & if you said 'yes' you were turned away & if you lied & were discovered to be LGBT you were discharged.

Before Bill, there were no LGBT anti-discrimination protections AND open homosexuals were banned from accessing classified information if they worked for the federal government. This meant that if you wanted to rise through the ranks in the executive branch--which means accessing classified information sometimes-- you would have to lie about your sexual orientation.

Back in 1992 when Bill ran for the presidency only 29% of Americans supported same-sex marriage according to Gallup

In his 1992 presidential campaign Bill campaigned on allowing LGB (though not T) people to openly serve in the military.

The idea of allowing LGB people to serve in the military was not popular position--only 43% of the American populace supported the idea.

(BTW When Obama over openly LGB people in the military in 2011 70% of American approved.)

In 1993 Bill tried to fulfill his campaign promise of letting LGB people serve openly in the military, but the push back was hard. Pretty much the entire GOP was against the idea as well as a huge chunk of the Democratic party. Democrats controlled both houses of Congress, but the bulk of the party was not with Bill on this issue.

Eventually Bill was able to reach a compromise between the total exclusion of LGB people from the military and allowing them to serve openly--'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'--you can join the militarily if you're LGB but you have to stay closeted. Unfortunately, DADT actually functioned worse than the total ban because it encouraged witch hunts of LGB peoples. As early as 1999 Hillary referred to DADT as a failure that needed to be repealed.

At 9:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In 1995 Bill issued an executive order allowing for openly LGBT people access classified government information for the first time.

In 1996, when he was campaign for reelection Bill signed DOMA--the Defense of Marriage Act. DOMA had two substantive parts: Section (II) stated that if any state legalized same-sex marriage that no other state would have to recognize marriages performed in that state and Section (III) stated that for all federal purposes e.g. taxes, inheritance, immigration etc, the federal government would only recognize heterosexual marriages as marriages even if an American state or a non-American country had same-sex marriage.

The was a purely calculated political move on Bill's part to help him win reelection & statements by Bill & Hillary that Bill signed DOMA to avoid an anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment are lies. I think both of them are deeply ashamed of this. It 100% true that if Bill had vetoed DOMA his veto would have been overridden as DOMA passed both houses of Congress with veto-proof margins--hell not only veto-proof but like 80% of all members in both chambers voted to make sure LGB people would be second-class citizens.

Could Bill have gotten reelected in 1996 if he had done the morally courageous thing & vetoed DOMA? Hard to tell but given how profoundly homophobic the country was it could have cost him the election had he done so (plus his veto would then have been overridden). However, I think the more important question is 'Was DOMA a cost worth getting for Bill being reelected?' I think the answer is 'yes' both as a general point & definitely 'yes' when it comes to LGB concerns.

In 1998 Bill issued an executive order that made it illegal for someone who works in the federal government or the postal service in any state or in the DC city government to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.

In 1997 Bill nominated Jim Hormel, to be the first openly gay ambassador in the history of the United States. It was to tiny, tiny Luxembourg, but it was still a first there was immense to hostility to this. Republican Senator Chuck Hagel objected to an "openly, aggressively gay (person) like Mr. Hormel" representing America. After nearly two years of wrangling, Clinton gave up and appointed Hormel without the Senate's approval in 1999 and he served until 2001.

At 9:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now we come to Hillary.

As a senator from New York Hillary marched in numerous gay pride parades:

I have seen more times than I can count Sanders supporters showing a video clip from Hillary in 2004 speaking out against gay marriage, but the whole context of that speech was that she was speaking out against the GOP proposal to amendment the constitution to ban gay marriage:

When the 2008 Democratic primary began there were two & only two states that had same-sex marriage: MA & CT. Due to DOMA gay couples in these states only had state level rights & benefits--no federal.

Both Hillary & Obama were against same-sex marriage. HOWEVER, both of them also took stances on DOMA.

Hillary campaigned on repealing Section (III) i.e. Hillary wanted the federal government to treat same-sex couples in MA & CT just like straight couples in MA & CT.

As soon as Hillary become secretary of state in 2009 she ordered that the state department provide equal benefits to gay couples working for the state department.

In 2011 as secretary of state Hillary gave a speech in Geneva, Switzerland before the UN where she stated that gay rights are human rights & human rights are gay rights.

Also in 2011 Bill formally came out in favor of gay marriage as the NY legislature was debating legalization:

In May of 2012 North Carolina had a ballot initiative to alter the state's constitution to enshrine marriage as one-man, one woman only. Bill did robocalls against this:

We know from just-released-in-December-of-2015-Hillary-emails that in 2012 when the Maryland state legislature was considering legalizing gay marriage that both Clintons were lobbying people in the legislature to make sure that the marriage bill would be passed

And then in May of 2013 Hillary formally endorsed gay marriage:

When did Bernie Sanders formally endorse same-sex marriage? 2009 When Sanders was running for the Senate in 2006 he was in favor of civil unions but not gay marriage.


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