Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2016-02-10
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Gay delegates and the DNC convention
Special to the Online Edition
by Lisa Keen, Keen News Service
2008-08-06

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


The LGBT caucus to this month's Democratic National Convention may well be one of the most eclectic bunches ever. Horacio Sierra is a doctoral candidate in English lit at the University of Florida, with a dissertation entitled 'Sanctified Subversives: Depictions of Righteous and Rebellious Nuns in English and Spanish Renaissance Literature.' Mirian Saez is the director of San Francisco's Treasure Island development. David Munar is an executive with the AIDS Foundation of Chicago. Colleen Cooke is a professor of therapeutic recreation at Slippery Rock University near Pittsburgh, Penn. Sue Lovell is vice-mayor pro tem of Houston, Texas. Steve Driscoll is an opera choreographer turned pro-wrestling promoter from Massachusetts.

And it may well be the largest. National Stonewall Democrats, the national gay Democratic group, expects more than 300 openly LGBT delegates, alternates and other participants in 'the gay caucus' at the Democratic National Convention. The group has been scrambling for weeks to assemble the names and numbers, and still hasn't identified them all. But from what data it has collected, it appears the caucus will include 305 delegates—at least 84 of whom supported Sen. Hillary Clinton during the primary; 74 of whom supported the expected nominee Barack Obama; and 147 of whom no one yet knows who they supported.

At the 2004 convention in Boston, the caucus numbered 254 strong from 43 states, Guam, Puerto Rico and abroad. The roughly 20 percent increase in numbers this year is due in part to a stronger effort by Stonewall and the party to make sure openly LGBT delegates were elected or selected. Stonewall launched a 'Pride in the Party' effort to encourage openly LGBT people to run for delegate slots.

Each state Democratic Party set 'outreach goals' for ensuring diversity, and most states designated a specific percentage of its delegates and alternates to be 'LGBT Americans.' Some nailed it and some failed it—but some exceeded it.

The Illinois Democratic Party, for instance, stipulated that 5.4 percent of its 210 delegates and alternates be gay. That meant 10, and the state party has 10 openly LGBT people on the roster. Texas set a range of between six and eight percent—or 14 to 18 delegates—and Stonewall says there are 20.

California decided on 12 percent LGBT participants, or 53 of the 440 delegates. As of deadline, the count was up to only 51, according to Stonewall. Michigan, too, is a little short of its goal for six ( four percent ) ; it has only four openly LGBT delegates.

The Massachusetts Democratic Party, for instance, stipulated that 6.8 percent of its 121 delegates be gay. That meant eight and, according to Stonewall, the state party has 13 openly LGBT people on the roster. Ohio, too, exceeded its goal ( 10 ) by electing 16.

Pennsylvania did not set a goal regarding LGBT participants, but its roster includes at least 10, which is about 5 percent of the 187 delegates.

Maryland set a goal—five delegates, or 5 percent—but then didn't include a box delegates could use to self-identify as LGBT, said Stonewall spokesperson John Marble. The organization has, however, been able to find at least three who are openly gay.

Eight states, so far, have no self-identified LGBT delegates: Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, West Virginia and Wyoming. California has the largest LGBT contingent with 51, followed by Florida with 25 and Texas with 20. San Francisco has the largest city delegation, with eight LGBT members, followed by Dallas and New York City with seven each, Washington, D.C., with six and Houston with five.

Rick Boylan, former director of party affairs and delegate selection at the Democratic National Committee, headed up the 'Pride in the Party' effort for Stonewall. He said that, in 2004, only 16 states had set goals for including LGBT members and representatives of other diverse groups; this year, all but one or two states did. He says the Democratic Party's GLBT caucus leader, Rick Stafford of Minnesota, 'worked with Stonewall and basically pushed state parties to set realistic goals.'

Steve Driscoll ( the former opera choreographer-turned-pro-wrestling promoter ) says there are technically two LGBT caucus at this year's convention—one that functions as a Democratic Party caucus and one that functions as a Stonewall Democrats' entity.

While Stafford of Minnesota is head of the party GLBT caucus, Driscoll is co-chair of the Stonewall caucus, along with Laurie McBride of California. The two caucuses will meet on alternating days during the convention.

'There's no real difference in membership,' says Driscoll, 'and both are open to the public.' The Stonewall caucus focuses on development of chapters and local affiliates; the Democratic Party caucus focuses on party relations and platform.

Even though there is growing talk of a fight in Denver over whether the convention will have a first ballot that includes Clinton's name, and even though most LGBT delegates have been Clinton supporters, Driscoll said he doesn't expect 'acrimony' at the convention.

Most of Clinton's LGBT supporters, he said, 'are absolutely on board the Obama nomination.'

'All of us Clinton delegates are getting e-mail and calls from disgruntled Clinton delegates who are insisting she be nominated on the first ballot,' said Driscoll, who has been a delegate to Democratic conventions on three previous occasions. 'And if Sen. Clinton asks us to vote for her on the first ballot and that does not diminish Obama's nomination, I will be happy to. But on the other hand, if I think it's something deleterious to the nominee, I'm going to think twice.'

Meanwhile, an online poll this month of 175 LGBT adults found that 60 percent support Obama for president in November, while only 14 percent think they'll vote for Republican John McCain. Almost 10 percent favor some other candidate, and about 17 percent say they just aren't sure yet who they'll support.

Obama's support among LGBT people is significantly stronger than among registered voters in general. Among registered voters, only 44 percent say they favor the Democrat, compared to 60 percent of gays.

McCain's support among LGBT people is significantly weaker—while 35 percent of registered voters say they'll vote for him, less than half that percentage are ready to do so among gay adults.

The survey was conducted by the Harris Poll between July 3 and July 11 and involved 2,960 adults, of which about six percent—or 175—self-identified as LGBT.

©2008 Keen News Service


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Affinity Community Services presents voter registration talk 2016-02-10
Racism's Toll: Research Center lays bare the moral, human, and economic cost 2016-02-10
Quigley backs Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS change 2016-02-10
Catching up with Hall of Famer Ellen Meyers 2016-02-10
Equality Illinois holds pre-gala event 2016-02-10
BOOK REVIEW Marie Equi: Radical Passions and Outlaw Politics 2016-02-10
News briefs 2016-02-09
World: Trade deal criticized; intersex poll; Tutu's honor; gay Indian prince 2016-02-09
Equality Illinois PAC issues first round of endorsement 2016-02-08
Pelosi joins Equality Illinois in anniversary celebration 2016-02-07
White House: Obama administration creating opportunities for all Americans 2016-02-04
AFC criticizes Rauner speech 2016-02-03
National: Gay Senate candidate; Utah pro-LGBT bill; Rentboy indictment 2016-02-02
THE RACE IS ON: Tight race between Clinton and Sanders 2016-02-02
Indiana gay-rights measure killed 2016-02-02
Alderman Burns retiring to join Airbnb 2016-02-01
PASSAGES Kit Duffy remembered in memorial 2016-01-31
DNC names LGBT advisory board co-chairs 2016-01-28
Presidential candidates answer survey on plans to end HIV and AIDS epidemic 2016-01-28
Hastert sentencing rescheduled for April 2016-01-28
Illinois families say state of state weak, cite failure to pass responsible budget 2016-01-27
MOMBIAN LGBTQ parents creating change 2016-01-27
World: Russian pro-LGBT move; anti-trans incidents; Biden in Switzerland 2016-01-26
National roundup: Intersex bill; 'Dump Trump'; Minnesota judge 2016-01-26
Labor secretary reflects on Obama's LGBT record 2016-01-26
National LGBTQ Task Force condemns anti-Semitism, launches review of Creating Change 2016-01-25
Creating Change conference marked by controversies 2016-01-25
Creating Change panel addresses Black Feminism 2016-01-25
Creating Change Closing Plenary honors youth 2016-01-25
Creating Change plenary addresses HIV/AIDS in trans women, Black men 2016-01-25
Task Force hosts 'State of the Movement' at Creating Change 2016-01-25
Eve Ensler and others sign on to "Stop Hate, Dump Trump" 2016-01-21
Taiwan's first female president pro-LGBT; Arrests made in South Africa 2016-01-20
Equality Illinois marks 25 years of change with another change 2016-01-20
LGBT groups deride Gov. Pence's address 2016-01-20
South African jurist to speak at NU Jan. 20-21 2016-01-20
Kirk signs on as Equality Act co-sponsor 2016-01-19
Task Force reverses cancellation of Israel-focused Creating Change event 2016-01-19
HRC endorses Clinton 2016-01-19
Task Force responds to controversy from Israel forum cancellation 2016-01-18
 



Copyright © 2016 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.