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Gay-Baiting Gutter Politics

I think Juan tipped this story.

Carl DeMaio is an openly gay Republican running for Congress in southern California. His campaign literature features pictures of himself with his longtime partner. He has been subject to increasingly homophobic attacks from lefty supporters of his Democrat opponent.

One false attack drew the attention of the San Diego Ethics Commission. An anonymous left-wing group funded a SuperPac and sent mailers of DeMaio Photoshopped next to a drag queen to neighborhoods with a majority of elderly and African-American voters, knowing that such a photo would depress support for DeMaio.

That was so egregious and false that the group was fined by the city’s Ethics Commission, but even after that, and with his 100 percent voting record with the LGBT community, the Left still didn’t speak up to defend him. They told DeMaio, “It’s complicated.”

“I’ve found more tolerance, acceptance and inclusion from social conservative groups who have to reconcile that I’m a Republican who happens to be gay…versus the intolerance the LGBT leaders see me as a gay man who happens to be a Republican,” DeMaio said.

This reminds me of another gay-baiting advertisement, this one made for the 2006 Campaign of Democrat Senator Max Baucus.

Renowned in political circles, the ad set porno music to 20-year-old footage of a video from Taylor’s cosmetics business. The video showed Taylor in a leisure suit rubbing cream into another man’s face. As the spot faded to black, it showed Taylor then seeming to reach for the man’s crotch as a voice-over said “Mike Taylor — not the way we do business in Montana.”

The campaign operative behind that homophobic, gay-baiting ad was a certain Mr. Jim Messina. Far from being repudiated by the Democrat Party, Mr. Messina went on to run Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign; a campaign that featured allegations that his opponent had given a woman cancer, wanted to outlaw contraceptives, put black people in chains, and outlaw tampons.

The gutter tactics worked, and gutter politics will continue to be practiced for so long as voters reward gutter politicians. Voting for a politician who uses gutter tactics is tacit endorsement of gutter tactics.



  1. Carl DeMaio is a Republican Candidate for California’s 52nd congressional district (northern San Diego county). Mr. DeMaio happens to be gay; National Organization for Marriage is not.

    DeMaio represents what some are calling the new generation of the GOP. Fiscal conservatives free from slavish devotion to the Christian right. These folks were once called “Rockefeller Republicans.” Yet Barry Goldwater, who was far to to the right of Nelson Rockefeller, was independent of religious conservatives. So was version 1.28.7 of John McCain. At long last, GOPers might be realizing that uterus control and gay bashing are not winning hearts and minds.

    Nothing spells doom faster for NOM than gay Republicans. The very notion that “gay GOPer” is not an oxymoron finishes them off faster than the US Supreme Court.

    Comment by rusty — April 28, 2014 @ 10:00 pm - April 28, 2014

  2. It’s an unstoppable trend. Conservatives & GOPers who happen to be gay are slowly coming to the forefront of politics. If someone doesn’t like it, that’s too bad. The freak show on the Left isn’t known for being too sharp.
    I’m not an expert in San Diego conservative politics, but I do know that he has a chance. It’s a “California Conservative” town.

    Comment by Marc Winger — April 28, 2014 @ 10:43 pm - April 28, 2014

  3. I would like to point people to heliotrope’s spot-on calling out of rusty’s lack of morals and trolling both here and here.

    Suffice to say rusty is here to only demand piety dances from others, and will never under any circumstances follow the same rules that he demands.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — April 29, 2014 @ 12:49 am - April 29, 2014

  4. I think you can add also a candidate for mayor of san diego.

    Comment by Susan — April 29, 2014 @ 1:56 am - April 29, 2014

  5. apologies for my post, I think demaio run also as the mayor some years ago

    Comment by Susan — April 29, 2014 @ 1:59 am - April 29, 2014

  6. Mayor Don Guardian of Atlantic City NJ is another openly gay Republican in a 80% Democrat City. There are still GOP members who turn their backs on them. Get the message out in the sunlight and kill the germs of hate.

    Comment by fortdixmike — April 29, 2014 @ 5:56 am - April 29, 2014

  7. PS I am 74 years old and refuse to give up hope.

    Comment by fortdixmike — April 29, 2014 @ 5:58 am - April 29, 2014

  8. Are we surprised? Progressives always profess to love minorities, but when they are behind closed doors, all they can talk about are the “Damn Jews!” and “Stupid Darkies!” and “Freaking fruits!”

    DeMaio is such a threat to the Progs because he dashes the narrative of “tolerant and forward Left, xenophobic and backward Right” to pieces. That, and his presence within the “wrong” party may draw too much attention to the essential similarities between the two parties, when everything over the past half-century has been an attempt to convince people that the groups are diametrically opposed.

    DeMaio’s platform seems to be generally right libertarian- supports marriage equality on an equal protection basis as far as government is concerned and wants to leave religious marriages alone, supports medical marijuana, supports abortion rights but says that communities should provide support to women to lower the number of unwanted pregnancies… but his chief interests are fiscal: deficit reform, pension reform, that kind of stuff. And he thinks that government should be concerned with the budget and spending, and not play social engineer. Barring any unpleasant revelations, he has my cautious support; he would probably get my vote if I was in his district.

    Comment by Sean L — April 29, 2014 @ 7:34 am - April 29, 2014

  9. (Sigh) I feel like Sean is the only one who even half-way got the point of the post. Sometimes I feel like I suck at blogging.

    It wasn’t supposed to be about gay Republicans, but about the sleazy and cynical way leftists exploit homophobia for political benefit… with no outcry from the gay left.

    Comment by V the K — April 29, 2014 @ 7:50 am - April 29, 2014

  10. V– I’ve never read your posts thinking only of ‘the point’. Any and all the subject matter presented here is rife with multiple interpretations and perspectives; then throw in tangents and it is too much fun to stay on ‘the point’ all the time, hell, any of the time. Take it as a compliment that we tend to agree and not wanting to rehash your astute conclusions, simply move on to other nuances in your work. 😀

    Comment by Rodney — April 29, 2014 @ 8:55 am - April 29, 2014

  11. @ V the K: Oh, V. You know we love you. But sometimes, you just do such a good job, we can’t add anything more! 🙂

    Comment by Sean L — April 29, 2014 @ 9:11 am - April 29, 2014

  12. @6: GOP members “turn their backs” to the mayor? Is there some rule that states everyone has to like everyone else no matter what?

    I’m certain there are Republicans that wouldn’t talk to me because I’m gay… and there are Democrats that wouldn’t talk to me because I’m conservative… or because I’m white… or whatever. So what? I can’t be bothered to care.

    Not wanting to interact with someone is not hate… it’s freedom of association.

    Diversity of sexual orientation, genitalia, skin color, height, weight, hair color is pointless. What we need is diversity of thought and ideas – something that lefties can’t deal with – hence the smearing of DeMaio.

    Comment by KCRob (SoCalRobert) — April 29, 2014 @ 6:16 pm - April 29, 2014

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