Grand Divisions

Tennessee Equality Project seeks to advance and protect the civil rights of our State’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons and their families in each Grand Division.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

The GLBT thing and the presidential race

I know, I know...I've said we're going to try to avoid the presidential race as much as possible on this blog, and I think we've largely succeeded. But a few things happened this week that justify some comments about the race so far.

Yesterday Sean Braisted raised this possibility about what Sen. Clinton might do with her post-campaign influence:

It would be great if she channeled this run to champion gay rights that were left behind in her husband's administration. After all, while the focus in the media had been on women and "blue collar whites," Hillary had quite a large following in the gay community in terms of volunteers, donors, and voters. It would be nice to see her reward them with a high-profile champion of full equality.

It's exactly the kind of question that is on the minds of observers in the GLBT community and one that we've been asking with some urgency in light of our concern for Sen. Ted Kennedy, who has been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. If he were to die or leave the Senate, who would fill his shoes in fighting for equality?

For now, it's not clear what Sen. Clinton's future holds, but if she were to take on the mantle of women's and GLBT equality, she would be warmly welcomed.

The other developments this week that prompted the post are the Human Rights Campaign's release of this stinging report on Sen. John McCain's record on GLBT issues and their endorsement of Sen. Barack for president. The endorsement has some significance for the Nashville area given the active presence of their local steering committee. Their annual dinner in Nashville routinely attracts around 600 people. So it will be interesting to see if a number of their members are activated to volunteer in the Obama campaign.

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