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News - September 1996

NGLTF denounces Log Cabin endorsement of Dole/Kemp

The following statement, denouncing the Log Cabin Gay and Lesbian Republican's endorsement of the anti-gay GOP ticket of Bob Dole and Jack Kemp, is attributable to Melinda Paras, executive director of NGLTF:

"Although we support the ongoing work of the Log Cabin Gay and Lesbian Republicans to increase their visibility in the GOP, we strongly disagree with their endorsement of Bob Dole. A Dole-Kemp ticket is dangerous for America and dangerous for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Despite attempts to position the ticket and the convention as 'moderate,' political religious extremist still enjoy a firm command and unprecedented power in the GOP race for the presidency. Indeed, at every turn, from the divisive platform that reads like a Patrick Buchanan speech to the behind the scenes authority of the Ralph Reed of the Christian Coalition , the hard Right continues to play a dominant role in the Republican party.

The Dole-Kemp campaign is a Trojan horse at the gates of American democracy. When the door of the horse opens, out will come not "moderates" but the leadership of the hard right, including the Christian Coalition, Focus on the Family, Council for National Policy, and other powerful hard right groups. Americans must guard the gate against the Trojan Horse threat of the Dole/Kemp campaign, not give it the keys to enter.

Dole's record on gay and AIDS issues is mixed at best, and Kemp's is dangerously far right wing. In his own words, Dole opposed the "special interest gay agenda that runs from gays in the military and reaches as far as to suggest special status for sexual orientation under federal civil rights statutes." Bob Dole and the 1996 GOP Platform believe gays should not be protected against discrimination on the job. Bob Dole is a lead sponsor of the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act.

Jack Kemp's record is worse. He opposes gays and lesbians as teachers and opposed the Supreme Court's recent decision to overturn Colorado's Amendment 2. Both Kemp and Dole have sided time and time again with arch-conservative, notorious anti-gay lawmakers Jesse Helms and William Dannemeyer on numerous hostile amendments, including one to cut off all funding to gay community health organizations, mandatory HIV reporting and others. Kemp has made an about face on his more moderate opinions on affirmative action and immigrations since being named to the ticket.

The Log Cabin members have made bold inroads in pushing their party, and we wish them ongoing success. Against all odds, they are attempting to wrestle control of the GOP away from political religious extremists. However, we disagree with Log Cabin on what is needed to strengthen our democracy and ensure equality for all citizens, including women, people of color, immigrants, the poor and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. This endorsement is wrong. The Dole-Kemp campaign is a danger to our struggle for justice."


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