Equality California On Caitlyn Jenner Running For Governor: ‘Hard Pass’

Caitlyn Jenner
Caitlyn Jenner
Caitlyn Jenner (image via Instagram)

Caitlyn Jenner’s announcement that she will be running in the California gubernatorial race has received a ‘hard pass’ from LGBTQ activists and advocates in the Golden State.

The election, likely in the fall, is the result of an effort to recall current Gov. Gavin Newsom.

Even though Jenner would be the first woman elected to the state’s highest office as well as the first transgender person to become governor of the state, LGBTQ folks are not flocking to her.

Considering several controversial statements in the past, including her previous support of Donald Trump, Equality California, the state’s largest LGBTQ civil rights organization, made clear its opposition to her candidacy.

“Make no mistake: we can’t wait to elect a trans governor of California. But Caitlyn Jenner spent years telling the LGBTQ+ community to trust Donald Trump. We saw how that turned out. Now she wants us to trust her? Hard pass,” tweeted the organization.

TMZ reports that Jenner’s sons did not want her to run and “embarrassed” by her candidacy. Plus, the Kardashian clan has already announced they won’t campaign with Jenner.

Conservatives, like Charlie Kirk, are predictably not lining up behind Jenner either.

Kentucky Governorship Flips Blue

In a solid red state that Donald Trump won by 30 points in 2016, Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear (D) trumped incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin (R) winning the governor’s mansion.

With 99% of the vote in, Beshear has been announced the ‘apparent winner’ by a lead of over 6,000 votes.

This is not good news for Donald Trump.

#happydance

Gay CEO Announces Bid For Governor Of Indiana

Indiana business man Josh Owens has announced his bid to become the first openly gay governor of Indiana

Indiana business man Josh Owens has announced his bid to become the first openly gay governor of Indiana

It looks like Pete Buttigieg’s success as a two-term mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has inspired some other accomplished LGBTQ folks to run for office in the Hoosier state.

Josh Owens, the CEO of Indianapolis-based online retailer SupplyKick, has announced his bid for governor of Indiana. Owens is the state’s first openly gay major party candidate for that office.

Owens promises to focus on improving education and bringing an end to housing and workplace discrimination in Indiana.

“I’m running for Governor now because I believe in an Indiana where teachers are paid what they deserve and where all are welcomed, respected and protected,” says Owens in his announcement video. “We need a leader who will ensure our state budget, policies and laws reflect a bold and inclusive vision for collective Hoosier success.

“Today, many Indiana teachers have to work second jobs and even then, they spend their own money on classroom supplies,” he adds. “As a businessman, I know every Hoosier in the workplace matters, and leadership is required to solve this problem and finally pay them fairly.”

Find out more at JoshOwens.com.

Oprah Campaigns For Stacey Abrams In Georgia

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey campaigning in Georgia for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams:

“That’s why I’m a registered Independent. Because I don’t want any kind of party, or any kind of partisan influence telling me what decisions I get to make for myself.

“So I wanted to just say to you: Nobody paid for me to come here; nobody even asked me to come here. I paid for myself and I approve this message.”

Oprah goes on to say when she personally called Abrams and introduced herself, Abrams  response was, “Girl, lemme pull over to the side of the road.”

And then there was this: ” I just wanna say y’all been on my mind – Georgia you’ve been on my mind. I was just sitting in California, minding my own business, but I could not stop thinking about whats going on down here.”

Nevada: 12 Members Of Adam Laxalt’s Family Pen Op-Ed Opposing His Candidacy For Governor

In a devastating op-ed posted in the Reno Gazette, 12 Nevadans express their opposition to Republican candidate for governor, Adam Laxalt.  Those 12 people happen to all be members of the Laxalt family.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Laxalt

In a devastating op-ed posted in the Reno Gazette, 12 Nevadans express their opposition to Republican candidate for governor, Adam Laxalt.

Those 12 people happen to all be members of the Laxalt family.

Here’s an excerpt from the Reno Gazette:

First, for those of us who were actually raised in Nevada, it’s difficult to hear him continue to falsely claim that he was raised in Nevada or has any true connections to Nevadans.

The simple fact is that while he may have been born in Reno, he left as an infant and was raised on the East Coast, 3,000 miles away, in Washington, D.C., and moved here only in 2013, only one year later launching his political career. Aside from the occasional short visit, Adam never knew the state or its people. Perhaps if he had, he would stand for Nevada’s values rather than for those of his out-of-state donors.

If he responds to this column at all, it will probably be to say that he hardly knows the people writing this column. And in many ways that would be true. We never had a chance to get to know him, really — he spent his life in Washington, D.C., while we lived in Northern Nevada and grew up in public schools and on public lands. He moved to Nevada in 2013 so that he could lean on the reputation of a family that he hardly knew while tapping into support by donors who had no interest in our state or its people.

It’s worth saying that this column isn’t about politics. We would be proud to have a Laxalt running for office on Nov. 6, regardless of whether they were Republican or Democrat or independent, so long as we believed that they would be good for Nevada.

We’re writing because we care about Nevada and because we know the truth about this candidate. We think that you should, too.

The op-ed is signed Gabriel Urza, Kevin Nomura, Amy Nomura Solaro, Alexandra Urza, Kevan Danielle Laxalt, Michelle Terese Laxalt, Peter Laxalt, Michelle Janet Laxalt, Dr. Kevin Marie Laxalt, Dr. Kristin Laxalt, Monique Laxalt and Meggan Laxalt Mackey.

The Laxalt family points out even though Adam is currently the Attorney General of Nevada, his tenure as a practicing lawyer was considered “a train wreck” by his own law firm members.

The op-ed also says that Laxalt had worked to undermine current two-term governor of Nevada, Republican Brian Sandoval. Sandoval has notably refused to endorse Laxalt in this year’s race.

Florida: Mayor Andrew Gillum Leads Rep. Ron DeSantis In Governor’s Race

A new CNN poll is energizing Florida Democrats as two of their top candidates are beginning to pull out significant leads.

The CNN poll, conducted Tuesday through Saturday, shows Tallehasse Mayor Andrew Gillum garnering support from 54% of likely voters versus 42% for Republican Rep. Ron DeSantis.

In the U.S. Senate race, CNN shows incumbent Democrat Sen. Bill Nelson leading current Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott among likely voters, 50% to 45%.

RealClearPolitics’ average of polls shows Gillum leads DeSantis by an average of 3.7%, and Nelson has an average 2.4% lead over Scott.

So, this is by no means a done deal. Make sure you get out and vote, folks.

Cynthia Nixon Falls Short In Bid For Dem Nomination For NY Governor

Actress Cynthia Nixon (L) Gov. Andrew Cuomo (R)

 Last night marked the end of one of 2018’s most high-profile political campaigns by an LGBT candidate as Sex in the City star Cynthia Nixon came up short in her attempt to become the Democratic nominee for governor in New York.

With 99% of the votes counted, incumbent Gov. Andrew Cuomo trounced Nixon by more than 30 points winning the Democratic primary 65.6% to Nixon’s 34.4%.

Nixon, a political novice who’s never held public office, had an uphill race pitted against Cuomo, who now heads into the general election seeking his third term as governor.

Nixon took to Twitter to thank her supporters and also take credit for pushing Gov. Cuomo further to the left on some issues.

“While the result tonight wasn’t what we had hoped for, I’m not discouraged. I’m inspired. I hope you are too. We have fundamentally changed the political landscape in this state.”

“This isn’t just a symbolic victory. This campaign forced the Governor to make concrete commitments that will change the lives of people across this state.”

Nixon went on to list several issues like legalizing marijuana, fixing the New York City subway system and banning plastic bags as issues her campaign helped to move the governor into making promises to address.

LGBTQ Advocacy Groups Choose NY Gov. Cuomo Over Out Actress Cynthia Nixon

Cynthia Nixon (L), Gov. Andrew Cuomo (R)

Out New York gubernatorial candidate and award winning actress Cynthia Nixon is finding no love from prominent LGBTQ advocacy organizations when it comes to endorsements for her nascent campaign.

Both the Stonewall Democrats and the Human Rights Campaign have issued announcements throwing their support for incumbent Gov. Andrew Cuomo instead of the openly lesbian actress.

In terms of the LGBTQ community, Cuomo believes his record on gay issues shows results not ‘rhetoric.’

“The governor is focused on results. We’ll leave the baseless election-year rhetoric to others,” said Cuomo spokesperson Abbey Collins. “With LGBTQ rights under attack from Trump, New Yorkers know they can count on Governor Cuomo to stand up and fight back.”

The Grammy/Tony/Emmy Award winning actress, however, points to what she says are lapses in the governor’s record including no ban on so-called ‘conversion therapy’ in the state. She also believes she did more heavy-lifting in the fight to bring marriage equality to New York state.

“Gov. Cuomo may have signed the bill, but Cynthia was fighting alongside other activists for the right to marry her now wife, Christine,” Nixon spokesperson Sarah Ford told Buzzfeed. “She understands the needs of the LGBTQ community as a wife and mother of a transgender son on a deeply personal level.”

Aside from the political posturing, though, the endorsements by HRC and Stonewall Dems raises an important question: should LGBTQ advocacy groups focus their support on candidates from the community? Or should experience carry the day?

Allen Roskoff, president of the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club in New York, criticized the HRC’s endorsement of Cuomo saying, “The Human Rights Campaign has been more interested in their real estate, high salaries, and hobnobbing with middle-of-the-road Democrats — while, in many cases, thumbing their nose at labor and other civil rights groups.”

“Their endorsement is not based on what’s best for the community – it’s about what’s best for their brand,” he added.

But Marty Rouse, HRC’s national field director, told BuzzFeed his organization backed Cuomo because “we stand with elected leaders who stand with us.”

The most recent polling, from Siena University, shows the Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award winner trailing 31 points behind Cuomo 29% to his 60%. That same poll showed Cuomo’s favorability at 67% and Nixon’s at 29%.

The primary is scheduled for September 13.

It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time the HRC has been accused of ignoring LGBTQ candidates over straight, cisgender nominees.

One example – earlier this year, this writer interviewed openly lesbian, black, female state Sen. Patricia Spearman prior to the state primary for the 4th Congressional District of Nevada.

Even with years in the state legislature, having a BA in political science, a Doctor of Business Administration degree, a Masters in Divinity and being a 29 year veteran of the U.S. Army where she achieved the rank of Lt. Colonel, she says the Human Rights Campaign never called her to even inquire about how they could help her campaign.

Instead, the HRC backed former congressman Steven Horsford, a straight, cisgender male, who won the Democratic nomination.

Some political folks have chimed in on the subject saying the Trump administration is an example of what can happen when ‘celebrities’ with no prior experience in public service take office.

What do you think, readers?

Should our advocacy groups focus on backing candidates from the community who step up?

Or should experience count more?

North Carolina’s Anti-LGBT Gov. McCrory, Trailing By 9,000+ Votes, Refuses To Concede

Gov. Pat McCrory (L) and Attorney General Roy Cooper (R)

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory, who infamously signed the anti-LGBT legislation known as HB 2 into law, refuses to concede to his Democratic opponent, current state Attorney General Roy Cooper even though Cooper leads by over 9,000 votes.

From The Advocate:

McCrory, infamous for signing the state’s anti-LGBT House Bill 2 into law, said Saturday that he would withdraw his demand for a statewide recount in exchange for a hand recount of votes in Durham County, which is heavily Democratic, The Charlotte Observer reports. The State Board of Elections met Sunday but took no action on that request, with members saying they had not received it in writing.

Cooper, whose lead has grown since Election Night, released a video Sunday declaring victory in the election, and Monday his attorney, Marc Elias, made that same point in a teleconference with reporters, the Charlotte Business Journal reports. “The math is simply clear. … Governor-elect Roy Cooper has won this race,” Elias said.

Cooper, currently the state’s attorney general, was a major opponent of HB 2, passed in March. He refused to defend it in court and called it a “national embarrassment.”

The law, among other things, prevents municipalities from enacting or enforcing LGBT-inclusive antidiscrimination ordinances, and it bars transgender people, when in government buildings, from using restrooms, locker rooms, and other single-sex facilities that match their gender identity.

HB 2 has cost the state millions is lost business as dozens of conventions, concerts and other events have cancelled over the hateful legislation.

Louisiana: Democrat John Bel Edwards Wins Governorship Over Sen. “Diaper Dave” Vitter

A little known conservative Democrat has surprised many by winning the governor’s race in deep red Louisiana.

With 56% of the vote, State Representative John Bel Edwards bested U.S. Senator David Vitter in a runoff election on Saturday to become the next governor of Louisiana.

From the New York Times:

A more promising red state Democrat could hardly have been found than Mr. Edwards, a Catholic social conservative from a family of rural law enforcement officers who graduated from West Point and served eight years of active duty in the Army.

Mr. Vitter, for his part, was a problematic candidate for Republicans, even though he had been widely seen as the favorite for months. A prostitution scandal from 2007, the baggage of an unpopular Republican incumbent, Gov. Bobby Jindal, and a series of state political foes with long memories dragged Mr. Vitter down before an Oct. 24 primary. He never recovered.

Vitter told supporters last night that he will not be running for reelection for his Senate seat in 2016.

Check out one of the campaign ads that Edwards ran against “Diaper Dave.”