Michael Crawford

What Did I Do to Piss Off Log Cabin Republicans?

Filed By Michael Crawford | August 27, 2008 6:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, The Movement
Tags: Gay Conservatives, John McCain, LGBT Rights, Log Cabin Republicans

In a post I wrote for LGBT for Obama, I seemed to have gotten the attention of Log Cabin Republican communications director Scott Tucker with my criticisms of John McCain.

In my post about the draft 2008 GOP Platform calling for a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage, I say:

I admit that our friends at Log Cabin Republicans are in a serious bind. Their party's nominee has opposed LGBT civil rights at every turn while Barack Obama has issued the strongest LGBT platform of any presidential nominee from a major party.

I feel bad for them. I really do.

But, the leaders of LCR have a very clear choice to make: they can either stand with the Republican Party even as it continues its assault against LGBT Americans or they can stand with their LGBT brothers and sisters who are fighting every day to live their lives openly and honestly and free from anti-LGBT discrimination.

Apparently that call to our LCR friends not to endorse McCain who has opposed every piece of LGBT legislation that has come his way has made LCR a little defensive:

I understand that progress with the GOP is not moving nearly as fast as Mr. Crawford and many would like. I understand that. I understand it is frustrating. But I guess we have a fundamental difference as to what we should do with that frustration. Some, like Mr. Crawford, say we should throw our hands up and stop engaging in conversations with Republicans. Well, if we followed that course of action (which we won't), I'd say good luck to you in your endeavor to achieve "equality" for gay and lesbian Americans, Mr. Crawford. No civil rights struggle has been won with a one-party strategy...and neither will this one.

You may hate EVERYTHING the Republican Party stands for. But don't malign the efforts of good, decent gay and lesbian Republicans who are doing work for "our movement" that you would never have the courage to do.

In his post Scott Tucker does little to defend John McCain abysmal record on LGBT issues and instead goes after me.

Scott, let me be clear. I don't consider you or any LGBT Republicans to be an enemy. And, I have great respect for you for fighting to advance LGBT issues in the GOP. That is, when you are doing that work.

An endorsement of John McCain by LCR would not be standing strong for your stated commitment to LGBT equality. It would be a sign that you are willing to support a candidate who has opposed LGBT equality at every turn simply because he is a Republican.

So, be frustrated and angry with me. But, use that anger to show me that I am wrong by convincing more Republicans to stand up for LGBT civil rights.

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Wilson46201 | August 27, 2008 6:05 PM

I'm sure Scott Tucker will be an eloquent spokesman for the Sodomite Caucus at the GOP Convention for all of us!

Hey, if anything, pissing off any flavor of Republican is to your credit...

Some of the LCR who are wealthy have done very well, financially, under the current Republican Administration. Should the Religious Right should every get so in control as to threaten the lives of GLBT Americans; so what? They'll just take off to foreign and friendlier shores. To fuck with the rest of us.

Those LCR's who are not so well off? Well I guess there must be some pride in being the last queers on the train to the gas chambers. That's the only reason I see for them to vote Republican.

I would say that gay people supporting McCain is like trans people supporting HRC, but that wouldn't be fair to the trans people. "Gay Republican" is the classic oxymoron. "I support people who want to see me dead." Yeah. Right.

I guess we can bet that gay Republicans are drinking the red Kool-Aid.

Scott Tucker,

I'm struck by the line "I'd say good luck to you in your endeavor to achieve 'equality' for gay and lesbian Americans, Mr. Crawford."

As a ten year activist, I am not trying to achieve "equality" for gay and lesbian Americans, I am trying to achieve equality for LGBT people. No quotation marks needed. Bisexual and transgender included. Focus worldwide.

Also, "your endeavor"? Are you not, Mr. Tucker, part of the LGBT civil rights movement? Are there different, disconnected endeavors? Do you see yourself as outside an unconcerned with LGBT equality? If so, what business do you have speaking on behalf of the LGBT community in any context?

No one has said to stop having conversations with Republicans. Ever. I've engaged in conversations with Republicans over and over again, sometimes with a positive outcome. That doesn't mean I have to support, endorse or vote for them.

Your condescending tone about the majority of movement activists, your straw man argument, your disconnect from the movement, and your attempt to avoid the real issues raised by Mr. Crawford suggest that there is much to malign about YOUR personal engagement in these issues.

And, yes, I do hate nearly EVERYTHING about the Republican platform.

LCRs aren't the enemy, they just have gay Stockholm Syndrome.

What'd you do to piss them off? You participated in a flurry of criticism after that AP article quoted Scott Tucker and made him sound stupid. (Notice that he posted twice in one day on that AP article on a blog that rarely posts twice a week.) The LGBT blogs all picked up on it and laughed at him because he was either really dumb or transparently dishonest.

I also wish that the LCR's would just stop pretending like they're the only queer people who talk to Republicans. Jeez, we all talk to Republicans all the time.

He finishes by mentioning that the important thing is that he's going to the big ass party in the Twin Cities to hob-nob with rich Republicans GOP convention. We can't say the gays don't love a good party.

Wilson46201 | August 27, 2008 7:43 PM

I was mistaken earlier. The full name of the LCRs in Minneapolis will be the "Sodomites, Catamites & Hermaphrodites Caucus of the GOP Convention"

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | August 27, 2008 7:56 PM

I would think that as the communications director for LCR Mr. Tucker would have more pressing concerns like trying to have the anti-LGBT language removed from the draft GOP Platform than responding to blog posts from me. Contrary to what he believes, I do not hate LGBT Republicans. I do, however, think it be a complete betrayal of everything LCR says it stands for them to endorse John McCain who has opposed LGBT civil rights at every turn.

I don't expect them as Republicans to endorse Barack Obama, but they cannot pretend that there is anything pro-LGBT about McCain.

Didn't they do that in 2004? Not endorse and work locally since Bush was such a train wreck?

A few people are mentioning that they'd endorse anything Republican, but I'm pretty sure they didn't endorse Bush in 2004....

Oh! Here we go! I don't see why they can't just do that again.

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | August 28, 2008 10:45 AM

Exactly. If their true aim is to build support for LGBT issues among Republicans, it does not make sense to endorse a presidential candidate who has opposed us at every turn.

We will see if they are truly about advancing LGBT equality or if they are about supporting the GOP and John McCain no matter how awful their record.

John R. Selig | August 27, 2008 8:11 PM

Here is the deal. Scott Tucker is right, in part. The LGBT community needs people involved with both parties, though I am sorry, gay Republicans at the moment make about as much sense as Jewish Nazis. Still, we need LGBT insiders to be present and make changes inside the GOP (Guard Our Profits).

The problem is that the Log Cabins will endorse their nominee regardless of their position on our rights. They my complalin a little but they will endorse McCain. Stonewall Democrats interviews candidates and only endorses candidates who are good on our issues. If a candidate has the nomination and is bad on LGBT rights they get no endorsements.

When the Log Cabin Republicans endorse the likes of John McCain and George W. Bush before him, they become (as my friend calls them) "Butt Boys for Bigots!"

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | August 27, 2008 8:35 PM

In all fairness, LCR did not endorse Bush in '04. That was the year that Bush was advocating the passage of the Federal Marriage Amendment and Patrick Guerriero, LCR's Executive Director at the time, made the courageous decision not to endorse.

I agree that we need to be working to build support for LGBT civil rights among both Democrats and Republicans. That's just reality. But, let's acknowledge that McCain is no Lincoln Chaffee or Chris Shays. He opposed every single piece of pro-LGBT legislation in the Senate and campaigned for an anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment in Arizona.

I think that LCR can make itself more relevant to both the GOP and the LGBT community by focusing on helping to elect pro-LGBT candidates at local and state levels over considering endorsing anti-LGBT candidates like McCain because they want to play in the big leagues.

I have to agree w/ Mr Selig. I think it is a very good idea that we maintain a contingent in the republican party. We need to have some people over there to support from the grass roots those candidates who might support us. I just wish they'd do a better job of it than Rep. Foley (R-FL).

Yeah, I can see having a committed (yet, generally unmarried) gay couple in every congressional district working for good GLBT affirming candidates. Heck make that two or three unmarried, yet committed gay couples. We can afford couple thousand of us locked in that delusion.

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | August 28, 2008 12:05 AM

It's a tempest in a teapot. Tweedledum glares accusingly at Tweedledee. Fingers are pointed and sharp words exchanged. Meanwhile the rest of us shrug our shoulders and make plans to protest on November 4th or sit it out.

Skipping, if we can. campaign hysteria, what are the differences between McCain and Obama? Nothing to get in a dither over.

Same Sex Marriage
Obama is a pigheaded opponent of SSM. He favors civil unions with their explicit second class status. And he says that SSM is a states rights question, exactly like George Wallace and Helmss did about voting rights. n.

McCain is a pigheaded opponent of SSM who doesn’t favor the hypocritics fall back position – civil unions.

Hate Crimes Legislation.
Obama claims to support it. So why did he keep his zipped while the Democrats tossed it in the garbage? Was he afraid that raising his voice about hate crimes would jeopardize the fruits of his long history of pandering to secure the votes of christer bigots? Apparently so.

McCain consistently votes against hate crimes legislation. He’s an honest bigot who won't be bothered to pretend he's a friend.

Obama supports repeal solely because he’s going to continue the war and wants cannon fodder.

McCain thinks he can continue the genocide without us and supports Clinton’s codification of military bigotry as do the Congressional Democrats who voted overwhelmingly for it and whose majority refuses to repeal it.

Obama claims to support ENDA but didn’t bat an eye when the Congressional Democrats, cheered on by Republicans, hacked at it until the bigoted business owners and managers of the Chamber of Commerce gave it a thumbs up and us a thumbs down.

McCain agrees with Kennedy and Frank and the majority of Congressional Democrats and Republicans.

Obama opposes socialized medicine and instead supports the same failed plan of the HMO/Insurance/Big Pharma cabal. Naturally he also opposes stifling the religious (superstitious) cults that encourage the spread of HIV.

McCain: ditto

Adoption Rights
Obama says he supports the right to adopt but he insists over and over again on condeming our families to second class status by opposing our right to marry.

McCain is against same sex adoption and wants to continue our second class status by opposing our right to marry.

The Judiciary
This is a non issue. Republican majorities among the US Supremes killed sodomy laws and the Republicans in the California and Massachusetts Supremes legalized our marriage rights. All judges are conservative and they move only after we push them. Hard.

State DOMAs
Obama claims to opposes the law that Clinton campaigned for and boasted about. Congressional Democrats voted for it overwhelmingly and absolutely refuse to repeal it. Obama exactly mimics Democratic racists like George Wallace claiming that SSM is a states rights question. States rights, whether advocated by Jefferson Davis or Barak Obama, is a crock.

McCain likes DOMAs too.

Neither of these two posturing fakers is worth a plug nickel. Vote socialist or communist as a protest or join the scores of millions who'll sit it out knowing that a lesser evil is evil.

Thanks to Christopher for the paradigm.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | August 28, 2008 6:18 AM

I would like to advise Mr Tucker that he is factually incorrect. A civil rights struggle in the history of the United States was decided by a single party. The civil rights question was slavery and the party that was liberated and right on the issue was the party of Lincoln himself.

How did they stray so far? Every African American who could vote would vote Republican until FDR.

We need to stop pretending that all Republicans are evil and rich and all Democrats are noble and poor. We know better than that if we look at votes cast. Just as we know there are plenty of less inclusive Democrats who yet pine for the good old days of the Jim Crow laws. I am certain that much of the grass roots of the LCR operates through contributions and time of small Gay owned businesses in isolated Republican communities. It could well be that the only option in these areas is to work with Republicans. Endorsements are another matter, but communication is everything.

My fellow Houstonian,
All it takes to piss the LCR types off is tell the truth about them.

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | August 28, 2008 6:18 PM

So true, and it's the same with Democrats. What, a coincidence?