Entries from: LGBT candidates

Gay candidate advances in Seattle mayor’s race

murrayEd Murray, an openly gay lawmaker who led the successful fight for marriage equality in the Washington State Senate, emerged last night as the top vote-getter in a crowded primary to choose the next mayor of Seattle. He’ll face the incumbent Mayor Mike McGinn in the general election this November.

“Ed Murray is a fighter, and we are proud to stand with him over the next few months as he makes the case for change at City Hall,” said Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Victory Fund, which endorsed Murray and supported his campaign.  ”Seattle needs a mayor who knows how to get things done, and LGBT Americans need more heroes like Ed Murray, who refused to compromise his dreams.”

Murray is set to take advantage of the state’s marriage equality law this weekend, when he and Mike Shiosaki, his longtime partner, will be married.

Photo:  Bettina Hansen/The Seattle Times

Gay Seattle mayoral candidate in campaign ad with partner

Openly gay Washington State Sen. Ed Murray, a candidate for mayor of Seattle, has released a campaign TV ad touting his leading role in passing a marriage equality bill, and featuring a shot of him walking with his husband-to-be, Michael Shiosaki.  The two plan to marry in August.

“Our family believed that we could make a difference.  When I realized I was gay I thought I’d never have that chance, but Seattle is a special place,” Murray says in the ad.

Murray faces a crowded primary field on August 6, with the top two vote-getters heading to a general election in November.

Learn more about Ed Murray here.

Seattle Times endorses gay candidate for mayor

murray shiosakiOpenly gay state Sen. Ed Murray is the Seattle Times’ choice in the upcoming mayoral election, according to an editorial published Friday.  The

“Murray’s experience is stellar,” the editors wrote, noting his budget-writing expertise. “His impressive political skills were on display in his two-decade campaign to win equality for gay, lesbian, bisexual and [transgender] people. It is an incremental campaign, requiring patience, discipline and persuasion of less like-minded colleagues. Murray inched Washington, step by step, toward November’s voter approval of same-sex marriage.”

Murray, who is backed by the Victory Fund, has served in the Washington state legislature since 1995. He is to be married to his longtime partner, Michael Shiosaki, on August 10, four days after the mayoral primary.

This Sunday, July 21, Murray will speak at the Victory Fund Champagne Brunch in Seattle.  For more information or to purchase tickets, go here.

Photo:  Kelly O/The Stranger

Quinn nabs major labor endorsement in NYC mayor’s race

Christine-QuinnChristine Quinn has won the endorsement of another major labor union in her campaign for mayor of New York City.

Today, the 40,000 member strong New York State Chapter of the Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA), which is comprised of 36 local unions and five district councils, announced their endorsement for Quinn, citing her leadership as Speaker of the City Council and her proven record of fighting for the middle class.

“As a leader since 1998, and Speaker for the last eight years, Chris Quinn perfected the skills needed to run a great city like New York. In a town where seemingly nothing happens easily, someone smart, strategic and tough, like Chris Quinn, is needed to keep New York New York in the right direction,” said LIUNA General President Terence M. O’Sullivan.

The news comes after endorsements by 32BJ – SEIU, with 120,000 members, and the Hotel Trades Council, which plans to spend up to $2 million to help elect her.

If she wins, Quinn would become the first woman and first openly gay mayor of New York City.  Learn more about the Victory Fund’s endorsement of Quinn here.

Why won’t Anthony Weiner stand up to anti-gay voters?

weinerNew York City mayoral hopeful Anthony Weiner likes to project a tough image, but the candidate goes soft when confronted with anti-gay views on the campaign trail, even telling one voter recently, “It’s okay. It’s not your fault,” after the woman called openly gay candidate Christine Quinn “the dyke.”

Recent reports in the Washington Post and Gay City News prompted Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund president and CEO Chuck Wolfe to question whether Weiner will ever confront anti-LGBT comments on the campaign trail.

“No, Anthony, it’s not okay,” Wolfe said. “If he can’t stand up to these repugnant views as a candidate, he certainly won’t do it as mayor. LGBT New Yorkers should demand that Weiner categorically reject these views no matter what audience he’s in front of, especially when people use slurs to refer to the only openly gay candidate in the race.”

From yesterday’s Post:

Yet no one in the race has the political capacity to relate to people like Weiner, who makes it a point to relate to everyone.
“You a registered Democrat?” he asked an elderly woman wheeling a shopping cart by him.
“I am,” she said. “And I’m not voting for uh, what’s her name? The dyke.”
“Okay. I just need you to sign the petition to get me on the ballot,” said Weiner, who then noticed the incredulous reaction of a reporter and added, “and you really shouldn’t talk that way about people.”
“Oh, I’m sorry,” the woman said.
“It’s okay,” Weiner responded. “It’s not your fault.”

(N)o one in the race has the political capacity to relate to people like Weiner, who makes it a point to relate to everyone.

“You a registered Democrat?” he asked an elderly woman wheeling a shopping cart by him.

“I am,” she said. “And I’m not voting for uh, what’s her name? The dyke.”

“Okay. I just need you to sign the petition to get me on the ballot,” said Weiner, who then noticed the incredulous reaction of a reporter and added, “and you really shouldn’t talk that way about people.”

“Oh, I’m sorry,” the woman said.

“It’s okay,” Weiner responded. “It’s not your fault.”

Weiner also refused to stand up to a fellow mayoral candidate who went on an anti-gay tirade at a recent mayoral forum.  The candidate is backed by the National Organization for Marriage, according to Gay City News:

Speaking at a forum sponsored by Orthodox Jewish groups, two leading candidates for the Democratic nomination for mayor made no comment after a minor contender in the race said the gay community was trying to ban circumcision.

“We have groups marching from San Francisco and California and they are even marching here every year in the New York gay pride parade, marching over here, trying to ban altogether bris milah,” said Erick Salgado, an Evangelical Christian from Staten Island, at the June 4 forum, which was sponsored by the Flatbush Jewish Community Coalition and the Council of Jewish Organizations of Flatbush. “This is unacceptable.”

Salgado has been endorsed by the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), an anti-same-sex marriage group. He was an organizer of a 2011 march and rally in the Bronx that opposed gay marriage. Salgado has also attacked the inclusion of monuments acknowledging non-Jewish victims of the Nazis, including gay victims, in Brooklyn’s Holocaust Memorial Park.

Bill Thompson, the former city comptroller, and Anthony Weiner, the former congressman, spoke immediately after Salgado and neither made any comment about Salgado’s views.

The Victory Fund has endorsed New York City Speaker Christine Quinn, who could become the city’s first woman and first openly gay person to serve as mayor.

UPDATE:  Two openly gay New York state lawmakers and the state’s largest LGBT organization have blasted Weiner for lacking the “moral courage” to stand up against anti-gay attacks.

“We are appalled by the account in the Washington Post of Anthony Weiner’s unacceptable response to a prospective voter’s homophobic, misogynistic slur in reference to Christine Quinn. Weiner’s response to this blatant display of homophobia is completely inappropriate and extremely alarming. There is nothing ‘okay’ about homophobia and it’s never ‘okay’ to condone bias-based slurs or hate speech of any kind,” wrote Assemblywoman Deborah Glick and state Senator Brad Hoylman, according to the New York Observer’s Politicker blog.

“No leader should ever send a message that homophobia is ‘okay,’” added Empire State Pride Agenda.  ”It’s unfortunate that we need to issue a public statement on this at all, but this is becoming a disturbing pattern.”

UPDATE #2:  Weiner responded to media inquiries today by releasing a statement apologizing if he left the impression that he believed it was “okay” to use a slur to refer to Christine Quinn. “If the impression is that I did, I apologize,” Weiner said, according to CapitalNewYork.com.