Monica Roberts

Why The TBLG Community Can't Sit Out The 2010 Midterms

Filed By Monica Roberts | September 01, 2010 7:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, The Movement, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: 2010 Election, GLBT, midterms, Monica Roberts, politics, standing, voting

I'm noting the volcanic level anger within elements of the GLBT community at the Democrats vote.jpgover the pace of the community's political agenda. While I'm angry at the Dems for different reasons and some of y'all within the GLBT community as well, Mrs. Roberts also didn't raise no fool either.

She raised a daughter who happens to see the big picture implications of the elections, and not just the "Save the Democratic Congressional majority" one that's all too familiar to us.

Remember when you peeps filled out those census forms earlier this year? Well, for those of you who aren't aware of it, that population data is what's used not only to dole out federal funds, but politically as well.

The initial population figures are being released to the states and the various municipalities in December 2010. That data will determine how many congressional districts a state loses or gains, and that will be in effect for the rest of the decade.

The states projected to gain seats:

1. Texas - (+4) (Current delegation: 32)
2. Florida - (+1) (Current delegation: 25)
3. Georgia - (+1) (Current delegation: 13)
4. Washington - (+1) (Current delegation: 9)
5. Arizona - (+1) (Current delegation: 8)
6. South Carolina - (+1) (Current delegation: 6)
7. Nevada - (+1) (Current delegation: 3)
8. Utah - (+1) (Current delegation: 3)

These states are projected to lose seats:

1. Illinois - (-1) (current delegation 19)
2. Iowa - (-1) (current delegation 5)
3. Louisiana - (-1) (current delegation 7)
4. Massachusetts - (-1) (current delegation 10)
5. Michigan - (-1) (current delegation 15)
6. Minnesota - (-1) (current delegation 8)
7. New Jersey - (-1) (current delegation 13)
8. New York - (-1) (current delegation 29)
9. Pennsylvania - (-1) (current delegation 19)
10.. Ohio- (-2) (current delegation 18)

houston skyline3.jpgSometime in March 2011 the Census Bureau will release the final population data to the states, which will filter down to the cities. The population data will be used to redraw your congressional districts, your state house and state senate districts and your city council districts.

We're anticipating in Houston the data will officially push us over the 2 million mark in population, which triggers a clause in our code of ordinances that expands our city council by two seats.

Okay, so why is all of this important from a BTLG point of view?

Unless you live in Iowa, in which the redistricting is handed by a non partisan panel, whichever party in your locality controls your state legislature (or city council, etcetera) will control the redistricting process. The way they draw those boundaries can either help, hinder or neuter the prospects for additional GLBT community political representation gains.

Let's use Massachusetts as an example. It's projected to lose a House seat. If the Republicans by some miracle got control of the legislature and the redistricting process, and bear in mind the results of whatever map they come up with lasts for a decade, you don't think they wouldn't take the opportunity to draw Barney's seat out of existence and force him to run against another Democrat?

When the 2003 Delaymandering happened in Texas, liberal bastion Austin was split between 4 separate congressional districts. The six white Democratic congressmembers at the time were suddenly facing districts that were redrawn to be more conservative. Blue Dog Rep. Ralph Hall switched parties as a result. When the Dems regained control of Congress in 2006 that map probably kept six Texas seats out of Democratic hands.

They also redrew the Texas legislature map to produce a 120-30 Republican supermajority, but thank God it's 77--73 GOP for now. The loss of the Dem majority paved the way for the anti gay marriage amendment that fouls our state constitution now.

In Houston we'll be debating where those two new council seats will go, and you can bet the Houston Gay Lesbian Political Caucus will play a role in that process.

But there are other issues your ballot will decide besides the long tern implications of redistricting. We have trans candidates running potentially historic races for office in Oklahoma, Maryland and California who could use your help and votes.

ts-brittany novotny1.pngBrittany Novotny is running against homobigot Oklahoma state rep Sally Kern. Dr. Dana Beyer is in a contested primary for a House of Delegates seat in Maryland. In California Theresa Sparks is running for the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, while just across the Bay Victoria Kolakowski is running for a Superior Court Judge bench in Alameda County. If you peeps want to speed up the day that we see a trans congressmember in our lifetimes, these elections are major building blocks toward making that a reality

Congressional candidates are generally members of large city councils, state legislators and judges. We have to start consistently winning those races to be considered for the next phase of the political game. Annise Parker's route to the Houston mayor's chair started by winning an at large city council seat in 1997.

So yes, there's a lot at stake in the November 2 elections, and it's not just the Democratic congressional majority. Our political fortunes over the next decade are at stake as well.

Recent Entries Filed under Politics:

Leave a comment

We want to know your opinion on this issue! While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

The editorial team will delete a comment that is off-topic, abusive, exceptionally incoherent, includes a slur or is soliciting and/or advertising. Repeated violations of the policy will result in revocation of your user account. Please keep in mind that this is our online home; ill-mannered house guests will be shown the door.

There are lots of reasons to vote. But I won't blame anyone for feeling like there's no point.

Thank you for this article. There are many reasons to vote, and you have presented another good reason that isn't so obvious. An hour or two voting in the upcoming elections may seem like an inconvenience (especially during a midterm election), but it's a lot shorter than waiting a decade for a chance to correct things.

Once again, the LGBT community is asked to punt its rights down the road for the "big picture", for someone else, so we aren't "selfish", or whatever fun word of the day is.. instead of dealing a hammerblow to a political party that takes our money, time and votes.. no, not only that.. that steals our god damned hope as well... and then proceeds to mock, deride, and ignore us.

Sorry sister. I'd rather them feel pain for their arrogance. I want them brought as low as they can get so they might hit rock bottom and realize they cannot take their constituencies for granted.

The LGBT community has become nihilistic and single minded in this regard.. if we have to rot while the country falls apart, then so does everybody else.

The GOP will get in, eventually, at some point. What then? Is there a contingency plan for that? No, there isn't. That's why it was important for Obama ans his cowardly coterie of cronies to actually PUSH our LGBT rights forward. They chose not to.

We've waited long enough. Either the people we voted for keep their promises or they can join is in the hinterland of the "have nots".

I'm done voting for the wants of other people.

I've said it before. Get rid of Pelosi, Frank and Miller but turn out a heavy vote for other embattled Democrats. The GLBT community could actually accomplish that but seems to have little stomach for a plan of any sort.

It is very possible to punish federal Democrats (or others) as the case may be in your district, and still vote for state and local offices -- as well as any referenda that may be on the ballot in your area.

Skipping federal races -- or punish voting against federal Democrats -- and still voting wisely at the state/local level are not mutually exclusive options.

Sorry Gridlock...I'm not willing to give the country up to a group of neofascists who hate me. My ancestors and my people have shed too much blood in and on foreign soil to just give it up to conservafools without a fight.

Black people have been asked to punt their rights down the road for the "big picture" as well for decades, so what's your point?

We ain't happy either about how things has transpired, but we are also politically astute enough to know that Republicans ain't gonna do jack for us.

Especially neo-fascist racist teabagging Republicans. The sooner the GLBT community realizes who their enemy really is, the better.

The Republicans had control of Congress and the WH from 2000-2006. Can you name one pro-gay piece of legislation or policy that came out of that time period?

And I do recall they spent a lot of time trying to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment that bans same gender marriage

You want to talk about waiting? My people have been waiting, agitating and working for four centuries for freedom and equality.

American and African-American history teaches me that civil rights for marginalized groups aren't a blitzkrieg moment. It may seem that way, but much of our breakthrough success in the 50's and 60's was built on our great grandparents work after emancipation in 1865, during Reconstruction and the early 20th century.

It is grind it out, patient, steady work built across many fronts interspersed with agitation to keep up the heat on the political powers that be.

But ask yourself the question what has the gay community done on a group, individual and community level to make that a reality? Have you built the intersectional connections that you need to build within the labor movement? With other ethnic groups? Protested the people who are ACTUALLY oppressing you like the Republicans?

Where are the sit-ins and loud bumrushings of GOP. religious right and conservative conferences? Where are the GLBT voices loudly condemning issues of importance to other marginalized groups who by the way, have members of them who are LGBT as well?

You and people who think like you are PRECISELY what the GOP is counting on November 2.

As Bobby Seale once said, you are either part of the problem or part of the solution

Which one are you?

"The Republicans had control of Congress and the WH from 2000-2006. Can you name one pro-gay piece of legislation or policy that came out of that time period?"

And we have nothing now. It isn't about Democrats or Republicans, it is about what their constituents think. Religion is the problem, not politics. We need to change minds and that won't happen until you change yours. Instead of us-vs-them, how about asking people to join us - Republican or Democrat? Conservative or Republican?

Sooner or later we need to enroll people in our equality. Until then, there is NO "political solution."

Deena, I'd add to your comment do PRIMARY challenges to Pelosi, Frank and Miller.

People in the Massachusetts trans community seriously considered doing that against Frank in the 2006 cycle.

We need to run more GLBT candidates for offices such as state legislatures, large city council Congress, and judgeships.

And most importantly, support them when they do.

"Brittany Novotny is running against homobigot Oklahoma state rep Sally Kern. "

Why didn't you say "Baptist" homobigot? Or at least "Christian" homobigot?

You seem to think "republican" is the problem, when it is actually religion. Our problem is rapid religious fanatics can inspire turnout and we can't. Try telling the truth. Religion is the problem, not political ideology or political parties.

Democrats are not 100% supportive of the LGBT Community, because of religious beliefs. The same is true of Republicans. Stop the counterproductive us-vs-them argument. We need to enroll people that support US, not a particular political party, just US. Stop fighting, start enrolling.

Does the motivation for the bigotry really matter? Are the effects any different because her bigotry is Christian based rather than any other factor? Even if we did take your advice and add "Baptist Christian homobigot" before Sally Kerns name, all you accomplish is a justification.
I would argue that if somebody were a one issue voter and only voted with LGBT issues in mind, the republican party would rarely get their vote. That isn't a slam on republicans in general, just their LGBT policy. And that's where the us versus them comes in. Most of us already do vote for the candidate who most supports us, regardless of political party. It's just one party is markedly less friendly on LGBT issues than the others and gets less support. Until the majority of republicans find a way to accept LGBT people and make peace with any outside factors such as religion, we will always be the "them". By using us as political ploys, Republicans are just as responsible for this alleged "counterproductive" mindset. Meanwhile, LGBT people will continue to enroll our best options which will continue to favor one political party. We eagerly await the day when that no longer holds true, and we can expect full support from anyone wanting to hold office regardless of affiliation.

"Does the motivation for the bigotry really matter? Are the effects any different because her bigotry is Christian based rather than any other factor?"

What other factors? Anti-gay bigotry comes from religious beliefs and no where else. Religion teaches that and it is the only institution that teaches that.

Religion is changing. There is some progress being made by Lutherans and Episcopalians - enough to actually split those denominations into two very different groups: those that cling to a literal interpretation of the Bible and those that put basic human equality before religious beliefs. We hasten that big divide by being specific about Christians and including what "type" of Christians they are.

Baptists are NOT changing, they are clinging to their ancient bigoted beliefs. So, yes it is appropriate and helpful to refer to Sally Kern as a "Baptist," not just a Republican. We have more trouble with bigoted Baptists than we do with Republicans.

If we're going to target people, let's at least be accurate and complete.

"Religion is the problem, not politics." They're both the problem. We have a really screwed up two party system designed to keep out alternative parties and prevent political change. The thing is that the democratic party is seriously messed up, they just passed the Reagan health care bill, they are poised to continue tax breaks for the wealthiest five percent, they are pro war, anti-woman, anti-gay, anti-poor, anti-immigrant, anti-people with disability. The democratic party only has one or two representatives worth salvaging, the rest need to go. What makes us give up on voting isn't that we don't always win, it's that we have a system set up so that we have no good options and the resulting laws are usually pretty damned similar (yeah, I said it. Where's your huge political gains from a massive dem win....still waiting on those....). 'We are marginally less evil than the republicans and we might manage to hinder them a tiny, tiny, tiny, infinitesimal bit if we have massive majorities and the presidency' isn't exactly a rousing slogan. The dem party is a big capitalist shit pile too, it just has a slightly less terrible smell than the repub shit pile. Give me a better option, that's what I need, but I know that the better options are systematically kept out of office and off of ballots. I'll just use the effort to try and build up third parties, rather than wasting it on the dems or ballot (my state doesn't do referendums, which would be a reason for some).

Andrew..seem to think? Republicans as they are currently constituted ARE the problem.

African American, Latinos and now Muslims who have seen their people demonized by the predominately white GOP would beg to differ with your assessment.

Oh BTW in case it escaped your attention, some GLBT people also happen to be POC.

Damned sure wasn't the Democrats who proposed and kept trying to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment, created the regs that kept HIV infected GLBT people from emigrating here or vising the country, or are publicly calling you every thing but children of God.

The facts speak for themselves and I doubt you'd get any argument from TBLG POC about our feeling Latino and .

Monica is right.

In 1968 we on the left rationalized not supporting the democrats with the idea that having Nixon win would "heighten the contradictions" and bring on a revolution.

We were stupid then. All we did was preside over the funeral of the New Deal, Fair Deal, Great Society, War on Poverty and the progressive movement.

We handed over the reins of power to ultra right wing fanatics who in partnership with religious fanatics and corporations have destroyed the middle class as well as instituted one repressive measure after another.

The Tea Baggers running this year on the Republican ticket are full fledged Nazis and Klu Klux Klanners. To let these people come to power is masochistic at best and certifiably insane.

Susan is dead wrong. The Democrats lost in 1968 because of a little thing called the US invasion and attempted occupation of Vietnam, not because of some ultraleft drivel about "heighten(ing) the contradictions". In 1968 Democrat candidate Humphrey supported the war.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the King's horses, And all the King's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again!

Teabaggers don't control the right centrist Republicans. The Republican Party is not the Nazi party and saying it is just as screwed up as the lies the Clintons and Bushes used to justify their genocide in Iraq and the lies Obama uses to justify mass murder in Afghanistan.

I was there and I was SDS. I voted Peace and Freedom or CP-USA that year.

I was about as hard core Left as I could be. I was also transsexual and came out about the time Nixon entered office.

After I came out Berkeley social workers and SF Public Health people helped me to connect with the Transsexual Counseling Services that were funded by various agencies within the War on Poverty.

TCS grew out of the Compton Cafeteria Riots of 1966.

I watched TCS die as the War on Poverty was killed.

It is very class privileged to ignore things that aided welfare recipients and lumpen proles and focus only on the war.

This one seems to be the same sort of actions conservative well to do gay men are doing this time.

Perhaps you can afford to live under the ultra right wing Christo-fascist corporate free market rule.

Many of us can't...

"I was there and I was SDS."

That says it all. I'm sad for you. SDS was a disaster that began with the children of the rich pretending to be leftists and ending with the monumentally idiotic attack on Chicago.

Are you still claiming that the pro-war Democrats didn't lose because of the war? All you said was "It is very class privileged to ignore things that aided welfare recipients and lumpen proles and focus only on the war." Which is beyond meaningless.

Since the war continued and worsened under Nixon I guess HHH might have been a better option.

Because electing Nixon destroyed the War on Poverty and the war continued until 1975.

BTW SDS wasn't at Chicago in 1968. Tom Hayden was the only one of the Chicago 8 with a connection to SDS and he had left it years prior.

Nixon was the start of the descent into neo-fascist ultra right wing governments.

If the Democratic party hasn't successfully come through for LGBT/T folks on a national level it certainly has on state levels, whereas the Republicans have always supported draconian measures.

Since the war continued and worsened under Nixon I guess HHH might have been a better option. You're dead wrong on that. Humphrey unconditionally supported the war - that's why he lost. Nixon said he had a 'secret plan' to end the war, which was the same as Eisenhower's 'secret plan' to win in Korea - the use of nukes. On both occasions when the USSR pointed out that they had an ample supply of nukes Eisenhower and Nixon backed down. By 1975 the militarists were running, tails between their legs, for Pearl and San Diego.

"BTW SDS wasn't at Chicago in 1968." Who said they were? But they were there in 1969 in their ultraleft 'Days of Rage' attack on Chicago which led to huge numbers of arrests and injuries. SDS committed suicide and tragically tens of thousands of activists left the movement in disgust. An SDS remnant, the Weatherman, decided to take their ultraleftism a step further and began to build bombs, succeeding mainly in blowing themselves to bits.

Nixon was the start of the descent into neo-fascist ultra right wing governments. That's delusional - there has never been a fascist government in the US, although the Democrat state governments in the south from 1876 until Jim Crow was ended came close.

State and local Democrats are defined by their membership in a party run by bigots. They don't control that party, the bigots do.

Andrew..the passage and signing by President Obama Byrd-Shepard Hate Crimes Bill is nothing? The removal of travel bans on HIV infected persons to the US is nothing? The appointment of more GL AND T people to federal positions is nothing? The introduction of the Student Non Discrimination Act is nothing?

Oh, I get it now. If it ain't gay people can get married ASAFP, it's 'crumbs'.

The Hate Crimes Bill didn't pass, it was used to hold defense spending hostage. Obama has done a little, but nothing significant.

Politics is mostly a waste of time. On November 4th it will be 1994 all over again.

Thank you very much for voicing your opinion. I am 60 and have been active for LGBT rights since 1969 and an anti-war activist since 1969. War, economic disparity, health care, equal rights, environment. I will not be voting for any democrats on a national level in November nor will I be voting for any local democrats who strongly support the national democrats.

Roberts, as usual, is confusing the partisan needs of Democrats with the needs of the GLBT communities and movements.

They're incompatable. Democrats are just as much our enemies in federal, state and local politics as Republicans and often worse. It was Obama, not McCain, who sabotaged same sex marriage in California in 2008.

We have no friends in either party and thats being recognized by very large and increasing number of LGBT folks. In Chicago the GLN plans to go after Democrats and Republicans because "After four long years of Democratic rule of both congressional houses and going on two years Democratic control of the White House, LGBT people are angered by the lack of action to end the U.S. government’s discrimination against our community.

It is no longer mainly "the big bad Republicans," but a government dominated by the Democratic Party which is:

* Denying us equal employment protections
* Exiling bi-national couples who can’t get rights to stay here
* Using bigoted standards to discharge us from the military
* Arguing in court to uphold the "Defense of Marriage Act"
* Continuing Bush's "faith-based" funding of sectarian projects with federal dollars
* Cutting international anti-AIDS funding
* Freezing domestic spending while spreading America's wars and taking military spending to record levels."

GLN plans demonstrations and they "invite others to join us in developing coordinated protests in other cities". Contact Gay Liberation Network at [email protected] or call Andy Thayer at 773-209-1187 or Brent Holman-Gomez at 312-543-7552.

and Perdue as usual is hatin' on whatever I post

When I see vanilla flavored peeps like you, Perdue expend the same or more energy spewing venom at your real oppressors, then I can take you seriously.

So when are you leading that sit in at the next CPAC meeting or chaining yourself to the door of GOP HQ?

It's obvious you didn't read the post.

Sorry Monica although I think Bill is overboard on many of his postshe is essentially right. The Democrats and this administration have done little to help our community and we need to start asking the tough questions like why. And the answer is there are no real consequences for them to do anything. They have decided that the matters of the GLBT are inconsequential because like lemmings we will continue to vote for them and give them money. I am for supporting individual Democrats who have demonstrated a true commitment to our community through actions and not merely words. But the Democratic Party as a whole does not get my support or money.
I have never missed a vote and I won't again but I will sure as hell vote for 3rd party candidates like those from the Green Party. Do you realize that when Judge Walker released his ruling it was on the front page of the national party's page. Was there a mention of it on the DNC page? The answer will be no. I am sick of being held hostage by a party simply because we are a little better than the alternative. And if you think this is just a blogosphere issue you are wrong. Ended up talking to 2 people on my gay bowling league who I hadn't talk to a lot before. We were talking politics and they said to me I'm going to vote for the Green party this year I am sick of the Democrats taking my vote for granted.

I read the post which is why I said that you're always "confusing the partisan needs of Democrats with the needs of the GLBT communities and movements. They're incompatible."

Sorry if you feel hated but with those politics I'm sure you catch a lot of flak. Thanks for your suggestions about who to picket but it's the Democrats I'd go after because they're the ones in power and doing all the damage. When you Democrats get trounced in November then we'll have two parties to protest.

Now I have a suggestion for you: post some of your pro-Obama, pro-Democrat stuff at sites like Wear your flak suit.

I generally enjoy reading what you write on the blog Ms. Roberts. But I find that your use of "vanilla": as a descriptor in this instance to be offensive and a simple ad hominem attack beneath the level of discourse one would hope for here and the level which I have seen from you generally.

If the Democrats are really worried about LGBT Voter turn out, here's what the President could say to inspire us:

Dear friends in the LGBT Community,

I know you are unsatisfied with my record to date on your concerns, our concerns. I hope this communication helps to change that.

To begin, I consider your cause to be equal in importance to every other struggle for civil rights and human dignity. To prove this, I am upping the ante on the Employment Non-Discrimination Bill (ENDA).

As currently envisioned, ENDA creates a separate employment non-discrimination law for “sexual orientation and gender identity.” I will not sign that bill. I can not in good conscious, being myself a success story of the 1964 Civil Rights Act which protects everyone else.

So today I am introducing a civil rights-version of ENDA that puts “sexual orientation and gender identity” inside the employment provisions of the Civil Rights Act where they belong. This is the law that protected my jobs my whole life and led to the one I have now; and you deserve nothing less.

This country long ago rejected the idea of “separate but equal” and today I join that proud heritage. I will fight to pass this bill, and to have a vote either way, by June 2011, working with either a Republican or Democratic Congress.

Civil rights should not be a partisan issue and it is our responsibility – our prime responsibility under the Constitution – to provide protection from discrimination against the LGBT community — just as we protect all of our respected communities and peoples.

This is what I intend to do. This is change you can believe in.

Now shut up and go vote (this part is optional :-) .

President Obama.


Sec. 1. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §2000e, is amended to add “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” as prohibited basis’ for discrimination in employment.

a. The following definitions shall be added at the end of §2000e:
(o) The term “sexual orientation” means homosexuality, heterosexuality, or bisexuality.
(p) The term “gender identity” means the gender-related identity, appearance, or mannerisms or other gender-related characteristics of an individual, with or without regard to the individual’s designated sex at birth.

b. Sections 2000e-2(a)-(d), §2000e-2(h), §2000e-2(j), §2000e-2(l), §2000e-2(m), §2000e-3(b), 2000e(g)(2)(A), §2000e-16(a), and §2000e-16(c), are amended every time the phrase “race, color, religion, sex, or national origin” appears to include after the word “sex” the following words:- “sexual orientation, gender identity,”.

He doesn’t have to tackle the full range of CRA protections. But this would be a respectable down-payment safely within the range of employment non-discrimination which has overwhelming popular support. It would also show us the respect we deserve.

Will it cost him something? Maybe. Maybe the opposite. But at least then the outcome will have been something to admire.

I eagerly await this email from the DNC, OFA, or Obama himself. I used to look forward to opening those OFA emails that came directly from him. Not so much any more.

To send this idea to the White House, fax it (free and easy on to: President Obama, 202-456-2461.

Our community is too small to ever have any political clout, so a political solution is not the answer. We must get behind and support all lawsuits (AFER, ACLU) that infringe on our constitutional rights and be loud about it. If you have noticed, only lawsuits have given us any freedom in this country, not politics.

Andrew, I guess CNN just made this up, huh and those pictures of President Obama signing por-GLBT legislation that the trans community has busted their asses to pass for over a decade is just a mirage?

crumbs? yeah, right

Lets see if I have this straight (pardon the pun) if it isn't marriage, it's 'crumbs'

Patricia Harlow Patricia Harlow | September 2, 2010 3:28 PM

It's pretty obvious to me that this Administration has done more than any previous one that I can recall. The real problem is that people want EVERYTHING NOW and equate minutia to nothing. The TLBG community will be working for our right for many more years, certainly more than a decade.

If you want to vote Republican because you feel that the Democrats haven't done enough for you:
1. You are being played like the greedy, impatient, American the majority of you are.
2. WTF ever happened to Ask not what your country can do for you....?

Get off your ass and do something more than internet activism, its sooooo self-serving.

There's way more to this that just marriage. Anyone who thinks otherwise is of little use to the TLBG community in the long run.

Mineminemineminemine, ok, I got mine now, see ya later....

No it's merely crumbs while the big things that will make a difference are sitting on the side. I am not just talking DOMA. It's EDNA, UAFA, and DADT. It's great he signed a bill that will benefit me when I'm hurt or dead. Let's actually spend some political capital to help me when I am well or alive.

Just wanted to follow up on some data from this (interesting and insightful) blog post-

Where did you get the redistricting seat projection totals? As far as I know, no data has been released from the 2010 Census. If you could cite the statistics or provide a link, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks!

So what are LGBT voters to do?

Vote Republican; as a way to send a signal to Democrats that our time, money and votes are valuable and we can not be ignored--knowing that this might result in policies that directly hinder our causes.

Vote Democrat; a party that is more accepting of LGBT issues as a whole and doesn't seem to be as openly anti-gay as others. Voting for Dems has the potential to keep some who are more favorable to our issues in power, but also might solidify the impression that we are safe votes and the Democratic party can be weak on LGBT issues with little consequence.

Vote Libertarian/Green/3rd Party; What could happen if all LGBT voters rallied to one specific party? We can use our voting power to elect fair minded politicians who have no issue vocally supporting us as well as supporting us through action. The risk here is 3rd parties don't have mainstream support, money and in many cases do not even run a candidate for many offices. We could find that we are voting for a candidate with little chance of winning, which means we leave our fate up to the voters who selected other candidates.

So.....what avenue is best? Is there other alternatives--like not voting at all? It seems like we might be in a lose/lose situation. I hope I am wrong.

We replicated the mistake in Texas.

After a jacked up scandal ridden governorship under Bill Clements, we elected Ann Richards in 1990.

She inherited a $6 billion dollar debt from the previous administration, but got to work on eradicating it since she was formerly the state treasurer and turned a $6 billion debt into a $2.5 billion surplus in just four years.

She used her popularity from her 1988 DNC speech smacking Daddy Bush and leveraged it to lure major corporations to move to Texas, put together the most diverse administration in Texas including gay and lesbian Texans, had an administration with many groundbreaking and historic firsts in Texas history, enacted the lottery, and called a special session to deal with Texas education issues and challenges among her other accomplishments.

It earned her a 73% approval rating. But because many liberals were pissed that Gov. Richards wasn't reversing Republican crap fast enough and spent too much time on economic issues during her first term,,they sat out the 1994 governor's election in protest. (sound familiar?)

The 1994 election that just happened to fall during the 'Angry White Male' midterm.

The GOP governor that got elected because of the stupidity of the left?

George Walker Bush

That's the ticket, Roberts. Blame the Democrats defeat on everyone but the Democrats.

Meantime in the real world you're going to get clobbered at the polls - nobody deserves it more - because Obama and the Congressional Republicans have spent the last two years giving tongue baths to the looter class, killing GIs and civilians from Palestine to Pakistan, busting unions, passing a health care fraud with racist provisions against immigrant and imported workers that also manages to deny funding for reproductive rights.

Now it's payback time from LGBT folks, working people and the antiwar movement. We're not going to vote for you anymore even if that means that the new boss, same as the old boss, is going to win.

"Gallup finds 54% of Republicans, compared with 30% of Democrats, already saying they have given "quite a lot" or "some" thought to the upcoming congressional elections. That 24-point gap on this key indicator of voter turnout is much larger than Gallup has found in the final days before past midterm elections."

Time says ""The public is rightly frustrated and angry with the economy. There is no small tactical shift we could have made at any point that would have solved that problem. A sense of disappointment, bordering on betrayal, has been rising across the country..."

"Given what we can see at this moment, Republicans have a good chance to win the House by picking up as many as 47 seats, net... If anything, we have been conservative in estimating the probable GOP House gains, if the election were being held today."

"In the Senate, we now believe the GOP will do a bit better than our long-time prediction of +7 seats. Republicans have an outside shot at winning full control (+10), but are more likely to end up with +8 (or maybe +9." Larry J. Sabato, Director, U.Va. Center for Politics September 2nd, 2010

You Democrats had better lay in some betadine and lots of valium - you're gonna need it.

We have no friends in either party

Perdue, Perdue, Perdue

I guess Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) isn't a friend in your 'hate on Democrats' opinion

I guess Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) isn't a friend in your opinion

The executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda, a gay rights group, said that he spoke with (then) Rep. Gillibrand and that she spoke in favor of same-sex marriage. "She spoke eloquently about the 1,324 rights that are denied to same-sex couples in New York," he said. This would make her the first US senator from New York to endorse gay marriage;

I guess civil rights warrior and Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) isn't a friend in your opinion

I guess Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-FL)
isn't a friend in your opinion.

and hello, I guess Rep Jared Polis (D-CO) isn't a friend in your opinion.

If they were our friends they wouldn't be in the party of Obama and Biden, Pelosi, Reed and Frank.

The party that gave us DADT and DOMA. The party that refuses to repeal them, the party that gutted ENDA and then dumped it. The party led by the bigot who sabotaged same sex marriage in California.

Democrats are defined by their party and it's a party run by bigots and bigot panderers.

Thank you for pointing out the long-term consequences of apathy. Gay and transpeople stand to lose alot here in Michigan--in a state that is already none too friendly. It's time we took a sophisticated view of our political positions instead of looking for bumper sticker "issues" to win.

This is the kind of commentary from vanilla flavored people that bothers me...

From Brittany Novotny's FB page:

Brittany - I hope you win. Sally Kern is a terrible choice. However, I am so disgusted with the Democrats and what has gone on the last 2 years, I give up. I don't plan on voting in 2010. I don't plan on voting in 2012. Let the Republicans destroy the country. I give up.

If you share those same attitudes, you've lost BEFORENovember 2. You will NEVER get same gender marriage, DADT repeal, or ANY progressive change.

The point is, sitting out an election (or ANY election as a marginalized groups is NOT an option. Get it through your heads right now, vanilla flavored GLBT people, you are a MARGINALIZED group.

Sitting out the election isn't 'punishing the Democrats, it's punishing your own stupid (yes, I said it) azzes. Your whiteness will NOT protect you from the GOP idiots who wish to destroy you and permanently roll back whatever civil rights you've fought tooth and nail to get and people like Harvey Milk put their lives on the line to accomplish.

So if you think like this, I have nothing but contempt for you.

The Tea Party movement isn't homogenous, has few points of internal unity and isn't likely to last or develop into a viable third party. It's just a bunch of rightwingers on a tear. What else is new.

The Teabaggers are fueled by their racist reaction to Obama's election, reactionary ideology and the rage shared by all Americans over the insoluble economic and war crises. As they become more tied down to fixed ideas they'll begin to split.

While workers, unionists, women, immigrants, people of color and GLBT folks can be counted on to move left, the middle and upper class activists and leaders of the Tea Party are already hardened rightists. Most of them are racists and some of them are fascists.

Teabaggers have won several US Senate and House Republican primaries and are likely to have representation in the next Congress, which is likely to be run by Republicans. The responsibility for the looming Democrat defeat lies entirely in the hands of Obama and the Congressional Democrats who have utterly failed to end the wars or make a dent in the new Depression. They've betrayed everyone but Goldman Sachs, the Pentagon and BP.

Bill Perdue's Prediction number 121. After the election Roberts and the WH will blame the 'teh stupid vanilla flavored gazh' for the Democrats defeat. (Previously, right after the 2008 election, I predicted that Obama would be a tool of the lotter classes, expand the war, bust unions, impose austerity and betray the GLBT communities. So far I've batted a thousand.)

On November 2nd 2010 vote left or sit it out. *

On November 4th 2012 vote left or sit it out. *

* unless there are important initiatives, referenda or propositions on the ballot.

Sorry Monica but you are way off base. I do believe that we have friends in the Democratic party and I fully advocate voting and sending money to those individuals but the Democratic Party as a whole has not shown itself to be a friend to our community. As a poster wrote on another site they are running a protection ring with you have to vote for us because we are better than the alternative. I refuse to be held hostage by the Democratic Party any longer. If we follow your advice they'll get around to things like EDNA in 15-20 years because there are no consequences for them throwing us under the bus.
So I will be voting this year but I am doing my homework. I have contacted the candidates to find out where they stand if they are new. I am looking at their records. If they are not supportive of my community they don't get my vote and that includes many Republicans. I will vote for a 3rd party candidate like the Green Party. It is not an either or decision. We need to stand up to the Democrats and this president who has proven to be far from the "fierce advocate" he claimed he was going to be.

Keep hatin' on the Democrats Perdue and ignoring the obvious that the Teabggers are white, Republican and 18% of the population.

What we hate are Obama and the Democrats bigotry, wars, mass unemployment and giveaways to the rich.

When the Teabaggers get elected and join him in defending DADT and DOMA and pushing ENDA and us under the bus we can add them to the list of people we criticize.

Right now it's you Democrats doing the damage.

Just mildly, very mildly, curious:

If you're not an "ultra-leftie," not a Democrat, and not a Republican - how do you identify?

I'm guessing ISO, but I could be wrong.

I'll be happy to answer your question. I'm very proud of my principled politics. You're wrong about the ISO, I am not nor have I ever been a member... Do you think it would be wrong to be a member of a revolutionary group like the ISO?

I'm a non-sectarian socialist who expects a third American Revolution, hopefully before I croak. I agree with Lenin that ultraleftism is an infantile disorder. (1) I think GLBT workers will play, because or our double oppression, a key role in building the engines of change that will topple the looter class. Engines like the trade unions and socialist parties geared to educating and organizing, not reformism.

I think Peter Tatchell, even if he's a reformist, is an international hero of the LGBT movement. He's been beaten down so often at demonstrations that his heath is very bad. (2)

I'm not in favor of marriage personally or politically but I'm definitely in favor of supporting GLBT folks when they want to get married when the bigots who run the two parties and others say no because 'gawd's in the mix' or because they don't toe the party line.

And you're an anarchist...? Subscribe to the theory of change via community organizing...? A cautious Democrat...? (If I remember correctly you balked at opposing him in 2008.)

(1) Left-Wing Communism: an Infantile Disorder, Vladimir Lenin


Yup, just as I thought: ISO (International Socialist Organization).

Your words are classic ISO - no real ideology, just a desire to stir things up needlessly everywhere you go as a proof of existence, and not much evidence of rational argument. And some very dubious "heroes." And a quick refusal to acknowledge that one is with ISO, when asked - that's been a classic ISO tactic from its very start.

My identification's right there on the record, as is my activism on the ground (and I have no idea what your 2008 reference is about - if you've got something to say, just say it, instead of dropping vague and surly hints. And do your research). As I indicated, I was only mildly interested because I think it's useful to ask people where they are ideologically when they begin to derail discussions with scattershot messages which come from every single political direction until we realise there is no centre; nothing holds in terms of actual arguments.

I think it helps if people understand that ISO folks are never interested in substantive debate or real change of any sort - if you don't agree with Monica, and if you think that she and everyone else is useless and misguided in their politics- and you say that often enough, every time someone brings up Dem/Rep politics, why harangue them? Why not focus your time and talent on developing - and showing us proof of - your own political projects that exemplify the ideology you claim to support? Whatever that might be? You don't see me screaming at the pro-marriage posts here (unless someone says something really daft like, "Gay marriage makes you happier and wealthier," which has actually happened).

As I said, I was just mildly curious. But...yeah, I'm done now.

You're lying.

I'm not a member of ISO. Ask them. Or better yet, channel Roy Cohn and ask them.

Tatchell, who you also lied about is a genuine, not a dubious hero.

"As I said, I was just mildly curious. But...yeah, I'm done now."

I suspect you're not done lying, not by a long shot, but it makes no difference. Politics, not redbaiting, rules discussions.

And you're an anarchist...? Subscribe to the theory of change via community organizing...? A cautious Democrat...? (If I remember correctly you balked at opposing him in 2008.)

Don't worry about Democrats and Republicans, they can take care of themselves. Worry about those who join the bigots in opposing same sex marraige.

:-) Every word is just another shovel to dig the hole you've got yourself into, Bill Perdue.

The Roy Cohn bit is always another dead giveaway.

As is the endless repetition of meaningless words without even a link to back things up.

Again, I'm hardly a Dem (and you still fail to explain your odd 2008 reference) but if you can't stand Dem politics, why are you here? What, exactly, are your political projects? How do you go about changing the world? Even if most of the people here are those whose politics I don't share, I'll at least acknowledge that they, like Monica, are trying to effect something in the real world through, you know, action. I might disagree with them and then tangle with them in the light of day (not in comment threads), but I respect that they're doing what they think is right.

I'd be interested to know more about specific issues you've engaged with. Oh, wait, there are none.

To be followed by yet more screeds, no doubt.

Roy, really, I thought you were done exposing yourself. Stop the lies. Did you call the ISO and ask about me? They're in your area at 773-583-5069. They must have really mauled you to produce the level of hatred you feel for them, not that that would be difficult.

If you don't want to call the ISO folks call the Chicago office of the FBI and ask them. Tell them you can't win political arguments so you're resorting to red baiting. I'm sure they'll understand

I'll just continue posting criticisms from the left and not worry at all about being lied about by someone discredited by their opposition to same sex marriage. Just as I don't worry when other rightists call me a Republican becasue I criticize Obama.

And you're an anarchist...? Subscribe to the theory of change via community organizing...? A cautious Democrat...? (If I remember correctly you balked at opposing Obama in 2008.)

Don't worry about Democrats and Republicans, they can take care of themselves. Worry about those who join the bigots in opposing same sex marriage.

"As is the endless repetition of meaningless words without even a link to back things up."

This has been fun - TTFN!

I'm not surprised you think unsubstantiated lying about me or Tatchell is fun. And I'm sure we'll hear more about Bill the Big Red Menace when I criticize defenders of Obama's bigotry regarding same sex marriage.

Often, when people have bankrupt politics or can't win arguements they resort to personal attacks. Usually it's Democrats pretending I'm a Republican, but in your case it's claiming I'm in ISO and venting against them. (They must have really given you a drubbing). I apologize for not not providing a link for the FBI so you could ask them if I was a member of the ISO. I figured you didn't need a reminder.

Next time try to be political and lay off the personal attacks.

And you're an anarchist...? Subscribe to the theory of change via community organizing...? A cautious Democrat...? (If I remember correctly you balked at opposing Obama in 2008.)

Ha, ha, that's funny - demanding to know someone's political affiliation, and exposing their political agenda (as slippery as it is) is now a personal attack?

And you still can't answer simple political questions. Have a great night.

No, Nair, what's funny is that in the middle of a discussion about the role of Democrats and Obama, a dispute that Roberts was (typically) losing big time, you jump in out of right field to derail the question at hand and hijack the thread with your silly lies and personal attacks.

No doubt you'll continue to do so when Obama supporters and Democrats are losing and you won't be anymore successful then than you were tonight. The Democrats are losing because they're reviled, especially by GLBT folks and there's nothing you can do about that.

You personal attacks are silly because I've said that I'm a socialist many times. It's not exactly breaking news. I'm just not in ISO or in any socialist group, not that that would make any difference.

Nair, no one appointed you Minister of Political Purity for the Democrats and no one is accountable to a rightwinger who opposes the fight for same sex marriage. Get over yourself.

We can argue about politics for years and still not solve the real issue. We have a Government that is ineffective in representing not only peoples interests but upholding the rights of the people it governs. Many seem to expound on the virtue of the "American Two Party System" but there is nothing I have seen that limits us to two parties, particularly when those two parties both have become more interested in playing the game of politics than doing the job the people they are supposed which is to represent all the people in their district not just those who have big check books.

In my opinion the first thing everyone should be interested in passing is true campaign finance reform so that special interest groups or big companies do not hold sway over those who get elected. After all who's phone calls will get answered, someone who just happens to live in a district or someone who has bought those 25k places at some event to raise contributions to someones election bid?

Both parties have done little for the LGBT community but of those two the Democrats have done slightly more. I do not know how someone can defend the Obama Administrations record on LGBT rights. They could and likely should have passed all the LGBT legislation requirements in this session of Congress but they did not. ENDA should be law, DADT should be history, as should DOMA. In fact we should be included in the Civil Rights Act by now. It however was not important to them.
As I said before they figure they (Democrats) can depend on our support and votes only because the Republicans have even a worse record of supporting our rights. Our rights are not as big a concern for the average voter so as to make it a go or no go issue. Until we get that message across to the general public, that we are being discriminated against in a large and systematic way, we will struggle to get the support required to get elevated to something more than second class citizens.

I will vote this fall. I do in most elections I hear about even the local ones. I will vote Democratic in an area that most consider joining the Tea Party a move to the left. My vote for Congressman will be useless but I might do some good in other state wide races. I however know one thing. I will not be writing any checks to the Democratic party based upon their performance in the last two years.

My my...all of this because I pointed out the 2010 midterms elections have bigger implication than people and the Perdue Noise machine realize.

No, Roberts, 'all this' because as usual you were losing. You're part of the machine that wants to trick people into voting for federal and local Democrats and it won't fly.

If the comments on the Democrats here, at Pams and other LGBT blogs are any indicatiaon people are going to sit this one out or vote left, You Democrats are going to get a political drubbing on November 2nd 2010. No one deserves it more because it's the Democrats, and particularly Obama, who doing the damage now.

When the Republicans get elected and join him in defending DADT and DOMA and pushing ENDA and us under the bus we'll go after them. But for now they'll just have to wait their turn. It's payback time for the Democrats, and no silly diversions from you, who pretends I'm a Republican or Nair and here redbaiting personal attacks will effect that groundswell of anti-Democrat sentiment in the least.

Blacks, Young Voters Not Poised for High Turnout on Nov. 2 - Gallup - Read it and weep -

I'll remind both you and your hired gun of your monumental political impotence on November 3rd.

The problem is that we don't learn from our mistakes. The reality is that rewarding Democrats with support and donations doesn't further our own community interests, it just gives the Democratic Party more breathing space to continue to ignore us and back-burner our issues, just like they are doing right now.

C'mon Monica, you were there in '04 and '07. How is this any different? Did we learn nothing from our many battles with the Human Rights Campaign and other self-serving "advocacy" orgs?

The longer we continue to reward Democrats with our money and votes without insisting on a return for our investment, the longer we'll continue to be thrown under the bus by these people every election season. It's time to teach the Democrats that such behavior comes at a price. Simply put, Democrats have to learn that you can't consistently betray and lie to your base and then expect us to be there for you when you need us at election time.

We've tried polite entreaties. We've done the lobbying they told us we needed to do. We've done the education. They have the majorities and the control of the White House they told us they needed. In short, we've given and helped to give the Democrats everything they told us they needed to pass ENDA into law and they're still putting us and our equality on the back burner.

I'm sorry Monica, but for a lot of us the "things would be worse under the the GOP" argument just doesn't carry much weight anymore. Not when you understand that far more actual damage was done to the cause of LGBT equality under Clinton than Bush. Not when you remember how Clinton and the Dems campaigned on the passage of DOMA and DADT in '95 despite showering us with promises of support.

Monica, you're asking this community to trust those who have repeatedly proven themselves utterly untrustworthy. Personally, I think if the Democratic Party really values and honors the support of LGBT Americans they'll do something to earn it...and no, passing the hate crimes bill, which had already successfully passed both houses of Congress under Bush, and a stream of easily- eliminated executive orders isn't enough, not in this economy, not by a longshot.

If Democrats are unwilling to legislate and govern according to their own political values then they should expect that many voters on the left will vote (or choose not to vote) according to theirs.

Support has to be actually earned, not taken for granted. When Democrats come to understand that and begin acting like they honor and value the efforts and sacrifices this community has made for them, then they'll once again become worthy of our support. Until then, for LGBT Americans they're not the solution, but still the single biggest part of the problem.