Washington -- Tomorrow, leaders of the anti-gay right wing will gather at the Family Research Council to discuss the results of their latest poll on the political impact of anti-gay amendments on the November ballot. This is clearly another effort by right-wing to force Republican presidential nominee John McCain into using gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues as a divisive wedge during the presidential campaign. In reality, the FRC's efforts another symbol of its movement's weakness in 2008 according to the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest GLBT civil rights group.
"Pollsters for John Kerry and George Bush, Mark Mellman and Matthew Dowd, have disavowed the idea that anti-gay voters were a factor in the 2004 election. Knowing that, candidates and voters should be skeptical of a Family Research Council-commissioned poll indicating that they are more likely to support a candidate who supports statewide amendments to ban marriage for gay and lesbian couples," said HRC President Joe Solmonese. "The FRC poll is another attempt to browbeat John McCain into becoming more anti-gay."
Voters in California, Arizona and Florida will consider ballot measures to enshrine discrimination in their states' constitutions. Arizona voters defeated a similar initiative in 2006. In California, Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has announced his opposition to the efforts to reverse marriage equality. California made legal marriages for gay and lesbian couples in May and began conducting marriages in June. In Florida, Governor Charlie Crist has been on both sides of the issue. He opposed spending state GOP funds on the effort to place the amendment on the ballot.
Even GOP nominee, John McCain twice voted against a federal marriage amendment, which had the very strong support of the FRC and its allies. Those votes have created a conundrum for the anti-gay organizations, hence their efforts to re-ignite the issue with a poll.
"Efforts to use GLBT equality as a way to win votes are stale in today's political environment," continued Solmonese. "A recent Field Poll shows that a majority of Californians support marriage equality. The FRC thinks that anti-gay voters are McCain's best hope to win his home state of Arizona, but Arizona voters have already rejected this tactic at the polls.That just smacks of desperation.Our nation was built on the ideals of fairness, opportunity, and equality under the law. Pathetic attempts to claim otherwise are a disgrace.Besides, the right wing's tired tactics are unlikely to sway voters feeling the pressure of a strained economy and exhausted by five years of a no-end-in-sight Iraq War."
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against GLBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.
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