Democrats Mail-In Votes Outpace Republicans In Battleground States

Michelle Obama encouraging voting by mail (photo: Jocelyn Augustino/Obama for America)

We all know Donald Trump has bad-mouthed and demonized voting by mail because Democrats tend to use the voting method more than Republicans.

Plus, with the ongoing pandemic, Dems have (in general) been more likely to embrace safety guidelines regarding the COVID-19 crisis than Repubs.

Which brings me to these tweets.

While we don’t know which presidential candidate received votes in the returned ballots, if the majority of ballots are for the party aligned with the voter, you can see why Trump has been so vocal about mail-in ballots.

As of today:

• Florida – Democrats 791,730; Republicans 450,447; No Party 287,704

• North Carolina – Democrats 238,789; Republicans 81,913; No Party 142,633

• Maine – Democrats 56,623; Republicans 16,623; No Party 18,502

• Iowa – Democrats 59,768; Republicans 23,247; No Party 12,917

• Pennsylvania – Democrats 198,448; Republicans 42,447; No party 19,448

As Amy Siskind says below, we need to build up these “cushions” because the Trumpers will show up as well.

Poll: Sen. Susan Collins Trails Democratic Challenger By 12

L-R Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), Sara Gideon (images via campaigns)

Quinnipiac University Polling released a new poll today showing 4-term Republican Senator Susan Collins trailing her Democratic challenger Sara Gideon by a whopping 12 points (54-42).

From the latest survey:

• 89% of likely voters who selected a candidate in the Senate matchup say their minds are made up; 10% say they might change their minds before the election

• Collins has a negative favorability rating (43% approve, 51% disapprove) while Gideon garners a positive 49% favorability rating versus 37% unfavorable

• Asked if the candidates care about average people, 60% of voters say that Gideon cares and while say 51% believes that Collins cares

• 53% of voters say that they would want to see the Democratic Party win control of the United States Senate

Collins won her last election with nearly 70% of the vote.

The same poll shows former Vice President Joe Biden leading Donald Trump by 21 points (59% to 38%).

Maine Becomes 17th State To Ban ‘Ex-Gay Therapy’

Maine has become the 17th state to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’ for minors.

Maine has become the 17th state to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’ for minors.

The legislation prohibits state-licensed counselors, psychologists, social workers, health professionals, guidance counselors and pastoral therapists from engaging in the harmful practice of trying to change a young person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

Lawmakers in Maine passed a similar bill last year, but the legislation was vetoed by former Republican Gov. Paul LePage. His veto made him the only governor in the U.S. to veto a ban on conversion therapy.

Today, however, Gov. Janet Mills enthusiastically signed the bill into law saying in a statement, “Conversion therapy is a harmful, widely-discredited practice that has no place in Maine.”

“By signing this bill into law today, we send an unequivocal message to young LGBTQ people in Maine and across the country: we stand with you, we support you, and we will always defend your right to be who you are,” she added.

Conversion therapy has been widely denounced by leading professional medical associations including the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Psychological Association.

Studies have shown that the harmful practice can lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide.

The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ youth, is invested in ending conversion therapy in every state.

Sam Brinton, Head of Advocacy and Government Affairs for The Trevor Project, applauded Maine’s efforts to help LGBTQ youth.

“After the disappointment of last year’s veto, they came back stronger and passed legislation to protect LGBTQ youth from the dangers of conversion therapy,” said Brinton in a statement. “We will continue to push each and every day to insure that every state in the country follows Maine’s example and ends this cruel practice once and for all.”

Podcast: Pop-Star and Pro-Soccer Player Come Out, Plus How Trump’s SCOTUS Pick Could Affect Marriage Equality

In this week’s podcast:

• The governor of Maine becomes the first in the nation to veto an ‘ex-gay therapy’ ban

• An Ohio congressman is accused of turning a blind-eye to sex abuse

• Starbucks expands healthcare for transgender employees

• New Jersey adopts new trans rights

• Ohio lawmakers want teachers to snitch on trans students

• How Trump’s new Supreme Court could affect marriage equality

• Pro soccer player Collin Martin comes out

• And Panic! At the Disco’s‘ Brendon Urie comes out

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report podcast.

Maine Governor Becomes 1st In Nation To Veto “Conversion Therapy” Bill

Maine Gov. Paul LePage

What a jackass.

Maine Gov. Paul LePage has vetoed legislation that would have protected LGBTQ youth from the harmful practice of so-called “conversion therapy.”

In doing so, LePage becomes the first governor in the United States to veto such legislation.

The vetoed bill, LD 912, would have prohibited the advertising, offering or administering conversion therapy to individuals under 18 years of age in Maine as an unfair trade practice, penalizing mental health workers who engage in the practice with loss of their license.

Included in the bill was a carve-out for members of the clergy as long as they didn’t receive any monetary compensation.

LePage told state lawmakers in a statement he was concerned about the ‘religious liberty’ of parents to decide how and if their children are exposed to the dangerous practice.

This isn’t LePage’s first trip to the anti-LGBTQ rodeo.

In 2016, LePage famously left a profanities-laced voicemail message for a political opponent that included the use of the anti-gay slur “cocksucker.”

To date, 14 states – Connecticut, California, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, New York, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Washington, Maryland, Hawaii, New Hampshire – plus Washington, D.C. have enacted legislation to ban the widely discredited practice of “ex-gay” therapy.

Even in his own party, the Republican governor is woefully out of step.

GOP governors in New Jersey, Illinois, New Mexico, Nevada, Maryland and New Hampshire have understood the dangers “conversion therapy” can have on young people.

Mainstream medical organizations including the American Psychological Association, the World Health Organization, the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics have all denounced the practice.

The Maine bill passed in the state House by 80-55 and in the Maine Senate 19-12 in a special legislative session last month.

LGBTQ advocacy organizations are calling for state lawmakers to override the governor’s veto.

Marty Rouse, HRC National Field Director, issued a statement which read, in part, “Governor LePage’s shameful decision to veto this life-saving legislation leaves Maine’s LGBTQ youth at risk of being subjected to a practice that amounts to nothing less than child abuse.”

“These crucial protections are supported by a bipartisan majority, and have been signed into law in a growing number of other states by both Democratic and Republican governors — including by the Republican governor in neighboring New Hampshire mere weeks ago.”

“With this inexcusable decision, Governor LePage has become the only governor in the nation to veto legislation protecting young people from this abuse, solidifying his place in history’s hall of shame.”

Janson Wu, executive director of GLBTQ Advocates & Defenders, called LePage’s veto a “heartless and dangerous action” that leaves LGBT lives at risk.

“Gov. LePage had an opportunity to protect Maine youth from these harms, and to ensure parents are not misled into subjecting their children to an unsafe and ineffective so-called ‘treatment,’” Wu said.

“Instead, the governor has sent a signal that the risk of hurting LGBTQ youth is acceptable.”

News Round-Up: June 4, 2018

(image via Instagram)

Some news stories you might have missed:

• Loving this new InstaHunk account find – Muscle_Woof (above). #WoofWoof

• A local veteran in a small Maine town has a big problem with a rainbow flag flying during Pride Month calling the show of LGBT support a “travesty.”

• Researchers in Australia have found a direct correlation between low cognitive ability and folks who hate gays.

• Promising news from the National Institutes of Health – a new experimental HIV vaccine has been shown to neutralize dozens of HIV strains from around the world.

• Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt asked a top aide to purchase a “used mattress” from the Trump International Hotel for him…?

• UK trio Clean Bandit dropped their new self-directed music video for their single “Solo” featuring Demi Lovato released earlier this month which garnered over 20 million streams during its first week.

The song is a paean to “self-love” (solo, get it?) and even better, the story resolves with a rainbow-furred dog. What’s not to like? Hit the play button below 🙂