August 10th, 2007
09:45 AM ET
15 years ago

Dems pressed on gay issues

A panel that included lesbian rocker Melissa Etheridge questions Sen. Barack Obama.

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) - Democratic presidential hopefuls stressed their common ground with the gay and lesbian community in a televised forum, but one significant exception loomed - same-sex marriage.

Thursday night's forum in Los Angeles was sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. It was broadcast on the gay-themed cable network Logo, making it the first-ever televised presidential forum on gay issues.

The group said it offered Republican presidential candidates the opportunity to participate in their own forum, but they declined.

Full story

soundoff (41 Responses)
  1. Ted, Long Beach, CA

    So did anyone ask the candidates if they were "gay" enough?

    Because that would have as much relevancy on any given issue as when candidates are asked if they are black enough.

    August 10, 2007 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  2. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Dave wrote,

    "And finally, it is utterly ironic that the same people who think gay issues don't matter and gays shouldn't have equal rights also think that they themselves are true Americans. America is about liberty, justice, and equality FOR ALL. Read your Constitution folks"

    Actually Dave none of what you said is found in the Constitution or Bill or Rights. The ONLY document which suggests Equal Rights, Unalienable Rights is the Declaration of Independence. "Justice for All" is only cited in the Pledge of Allegance.

    I've read the Constitution. I invite you to cite where specifically it provides that sexual orientation is a protected class or that gay marriage is to be allowed.

    August 10, 2007 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  3. Jim, Salt Lake City, UT

    The only thing that should be an issue is equal treatment. Seeing as how marriage is a religious institution, government shouldn't be involved at all. The only aspect they should be involved in is ensuring that homosexual couples have the same benefits and rights as heterosexuals. Those rights however should not extend to matters of having children or adoption

    Evolution/God/Or whatever have made it impossible for partners of the same sex to have children. If you have a problem with that take it up with god, mother nature, or whatever you believe. The more we continue to try to mess with what is natural the worse things can get.

    August 10, 2007 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  4. David, Arlington, VA

    Chip, aside from coming across as rude and arrogant for pointing out my "many grammatical errors," are you saying that because the Constitution does not explicitly establish equal rights it's ok for gays to be discriminated against? The Constitution says that there are rights Americans enjoy that are not be written down in the document, because it wasn't intended to be a prohibitive list. So answer the question: are you seriously opposed to equal rights for gays? And since you;re so enlightened, I'm sure you realize that, just like Christians and white hetero males, gays are NOT covered by federal anti-discrimination or hate crimes laws. Again, please explain how we receive this so-called special treatment. And I apologize if my post came across as inflammatory. It's just difficult to maintain ones composure 100 percent of the time when I'm consistently reminded by my government and my country that I'm not an equal human being as my heterosexual counterparts. Walk a day in my shoes, and I'd like to see if you can refrain from being just a little angry.

    August 10, 2007 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. David, Arlington, VA

    And let me just apologize in advance for the two or three typos in the previous post. I'd for others who disagree with my actual arguments to waste time having to point those out...

    August 10, 2007 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  6. David, Arlington, VA

    Darn, my attempt at snarkiness was foiled by the fact that the second sentence should have read: I'd hate for others who disagree with my actual arguments to waste time having to point those out…

    August 10, 2007 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  7. Connie, Tn.

    You are so right, Sabine. As a liberal Democrat living in the Bible belt, I can tell you they are the most bigoted people in the world.

    August 10, 2007 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  8. Joliene , Newark DE

    I personally am against gay marriage but that is not what is important in politics. When it comes down to representing a nation no issue that caters to such a small minority of the country should be given such credence. The most recent statistic i saw states that less then 3% of people are gay, lesbian, or trans-gendered and it is about time the democratic party started realizing that catering to specific groups (of which there are so few people!) only hurts you with the nation at large whether the agree with you or not, they do not feel as thought their issues are focused on!

    August 10, 2007 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  9. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Dave ~ Arlington, VA,

    You wrote, "are you seriously opposed to equal rights for gays?"

    MARRIAGE is not a right. Children (under 18) can not marry (without supportive laws and parents' consent). Polygamy is not permited. Inter-family marriage (brother/sister) is not permited. The Constitution and Bill of Rights do not provide a "right" for marriage.

    You'll say I'm playing semantics as any adult is permitted to marry someone of the opposite sex provided its not their sibling.

    SO can anyone of the gay community – marry someone of the opposite sex.

    Here is the HARD truth – our country has a set of laws that aren't always viewed as "fair". There are some laws which seemingly descriminate – some examples:
    1) An immigrant can never be President
    2) Anyone under the age of 35 can not run for President
    3) 13 year old can't apply for a drivers license
    4) Felons can't own guns
    5) White male business owners can't apply for "Minority Only" government contracts

    Considering our country is a democracy (actually a Republic) ... but considering "America" is not ready to embrace same-sex marriage, THIS will be one of those rules which doesn't apply to everyone.

    And once that pandora's box is opened – be prepared to offer 'marriage' to polygamists, siblings, and any other type of "consenting adult" arrangement you can dream up. HOW could we descriminate against THOSE groups if same-sex marriages are permitted?

    August 10, 2007 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  10. Mike Gricks, Spokane Washington

    Gays in the military..? Well try asking most military members, and they'll tell you it's a great policy and President Clinton (Bill) was real smart for putting it into place. It works very well and covers all basis.

    August 10, 2007 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  11. likely voter

    I am opposed to gay marriage. I am not an evangelical or a homophobe.
    Hospital visitation is a hospital policy not law. You can have same sex beneficiaries and co-signers. You can have a will. There are many rights that don't require even a civil union.
    One person mention how brothers and sisters can't marry and that is true even for millions of half and step siblings. It also applies to cousins. Even if they allow civil unions or marriage for cousins I would still oppose it for same sex individuals.

    August 10, 2007 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  12. Val Davydov, Agawam, MA

    Marriage is a sacred union between one man and one woman. Gen. 2:24: "Therefore a /man/ shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his /wife/, and they shall become /one flesh/," meaning child conception through sexual union. This "one flesh" conception process certainly cannot be naturally present in gay couples.

    Second, gay and lesbians get so angry at straight people's stance on this issue that they just can't simply control themselves – they are forcing their lifestyles upon those that don't agree with them. Just read Ben's (from San Francisco) comments for example – for crying out loud he is using profanity in public. How low is that? It's absurd.

    Third. I am just glad that neither Republican candidate participated in this debate.

    August 10, 2007 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  13. Don Saint Louis, MO

    Why do ignorant people always quote the bible as if it's the law? For those who are not christian in this country it's a tragic insult when those opposed to to issues immediately us the bible to support their argument.

    Our constitution, for all Americans, does not quote the bible. Why do you?

    August 11, 2007 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  14. Wyatt, OH

    I have a question for those of you that say this issue is not important compared to everything else that is going on in this country. Why then did President Bush think it was important enough to change the constitution in order to prohibit gay marriage right as he was gearing up this pathetic excuse for a war? Answer? Oh yeah, it was another way to keep us dancing from one foot to the other while he laid the ground work for the most corrupt, immoral foreign policy debacle this country has ever seen. To me, if the right wing wants to protect the sanctity of marriage (so they can divorce and re-marry three times...Limbaugh!!!) whatever, the issue is the rights afforded to married people. Call it civil unions, or whatever you want to, just give EVERYONE equal rights afforded under the law.

    August 12, 2007 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  15. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    Dan, Columbia MD : August 10, 2007 posting is dead on.

    These losers already know that they have the gay vote all sewn up and are just trying to play to moderates of both parties.

    Clintonistas out there tend to forget that Billy boy and Shrillary adopted the Don't ask, Don't tell policy that gays love to somehow blame on right-wing, bible thumping Republicans.

    I am just as sick and tired of hearing gays shout "bigots and right-wing haters" when someone is against gay marriage as I am hearing "racists and bigots" being shouted when someone is anti-ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT.

    No bible thumper here and I wholly support civil unions with ALL attached rights given, but marriage is simply between one man and one woman.

    August 13, 2007 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  16. Kituxi

    Heh. Here's an itneresting thought: In the future, marriage benefits and marriage practice may combine in such a way that, for tax purposes, all employees will have to marry the CEO!

    February 19, 2012 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
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