I just returned from a (Gay) Hollywood Social Mixer where I found something that most people assume to be rare in this town–good conversation. I talked with a number of interesting and intelligent guys, one of them a left-wing radio host I know and whose company I enjoy, as well as several acquaintances and some people I met for the first time tonight.
One of those men was yet another gay Democrat (or inclined to the Democrats) who while he favored the party of Bill Clinton, said if the choice were between John McCain and Barack Obama, he’d vote for McCain. If he voted at all. This now makes five gay men, one of whom raised money for Mrs. Clinton, whom I have heard say they’d vote for the Republican candidate this fallÂ if Barack Obama were their party’s nominee.
Indeed, the man with whom I spoke tonight wasn’t sure whether he could support Mrs. Clinton should she win her party’s nod and tap the Illinois Senator as her running mate. He’s no fan of the junior Senator from the Empire State, saying he only voted for her in the California primary to stop Obama, his man John Edwards having dropped out of the race by then.
There seems to be a common theme among these Democrats (and at least one Democrat-leaning Independent). They just don’t trust their party’s presidential frontrunner. One man said he lacked experience, another was concerned about his ties to shady characters. They didn’t think there was much substance behind his sizzle.
Tonight, my conversation partner called Obama Ã©litist and noted the fervor of his followers, fans who fault him for daring to oppose their “savior.” So harsh have been their attacks that he fears coming out in certain Hollywood circles as a Hillary supporter, indeed even relishing the moments when he meets another Democrat who questions Obama’s competence. Sounds like the experience of being a gay Republican.
These Obama acolytes seem to think that if their man wins, everything will be coming up roses. And they’ll broach no dissent even (especially?) from fellow Democrats.
When I talked to the radio host, he acknowledged (seemingly reluctant) support for the Democratic frontrunner, but like many on the left had no warm feelings for Mrs. Clinton. Once again, I witness the intense animosity some on the left feel for the former First Lady. (As this post to which Glenn alerted me indicates.)
While I have been aware since this outset of this campaign (sometime last fall) that many Democrats harbor harsh feelings for Mrs. Clinton, I had not until February been aware that some on the left had similar sentiments for her Democratic rival. I realize my evidence is only anecdotal, but given the circles in which I travel, to find three gay Democrats in the Hollywood area considering a vote for McCain (with the remaining two outside LA) seems significant.
John McCain could win a substantial share of the gay vote this fall, largely because many intelligent Democrats are increasingly skeptical of their party’s likely nominee. Another reason to be grateful our party’s nominee opposed the Federal Marriage Amendment in 2004. And another reminder of the perils of nominating an untested candidate, particularly one who inspires such fervent followers.