News Round-Up: February 10, 2020

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: Hunky Dan Tai (above) starts the week looking forward – “Everything the light touches is our kingdom.” Follow Dan on Instagram here.

CBS News: Pete Buttigieg (who was named the victor of the Iowa caucuses by a squeak) is asking for a partial recanvass for 66 precincts as well as a recanvass of all in-state satellite caucus locations. The former South Bend mayor said he believes the discrepancies identified by his campaign would result in a net increase of 14 state delegate equivalents if corrected.

Oscars 2020: I loved Janelle Monáe’s opening number for the Academy Awards. Beginning with the theme from Mr. Rogers Neighborhood and then moving into a robust celebration of “all the amazing talent in this room,” the 34-year-old told the audience, “I’m so proud to stand here as a black, queer artist, telling stories.” The dancers were on point, the visuals creative, and when Billy Porter joined the number to knock out some “I’m Still Standing,” it all went over the top. #Bravo

Washington Post: Federal prosecutors on Monday said longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone deserves a sentence of 7 to 9 years in prison for lying to Congress and tampering with a witness related to his efforts to learn about hacked Democratic emails during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Virginia: The Virginia state House on Monday passed HB 972, which would decriminalize marijuana, by a vote of 64-34. The state Senate is expected to pass its own version shortly. Gov. Ralph Northam has signaled his support for the measure.

Out: Netflix announced today that the popular series Sex Education will, indeed, return for a third season.

USA Today: For the first time in the 2020 Democratic primary, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders took the lead in a national Quinnipiac University poll, overtaking former Vice President Joe Biden, just after the Iowa caucuses and one day ahead of Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary. Sanders received 25% support among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents, with Biden at 17%.

Final NH Poll Shows Sanders Leading Buttigieg 7+

L-R Sen. Bernie Sanders, Mayor Pete Buttigieg

CNN’s final tracking poll for the upcoming New Hampshire Democratic primary tomorrow shows Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) holding steady with a solid lead.

Conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center, the results show Sanders with 29 percent support, former Mayor Pete Buttigieg with 22 percent support, former Vice President Joe Biden ranks a fairly distant 3rd place with 11 percent, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) with 10 percent.

Those results mirror the RealClearPolitics average of polls showing Sanders with 29 percent and Mayor Pete at 22 percent with the rest of the pack fairly far behind.

It’s worth noting that in 2016, Sanders beat former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the New Hampshire primary by nearly 22 points. I’m not thinking Sanders win this time will be quite so large.

While nearly half say they haven’t fully made up their minds, when asked who voters in New Hampshire believe will win the primary, 59 percent said Sanders versus only 10 percent naming Buttigieg.

News Round-Up: February 7, 2020

Anthony Varrechia (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: Like a LOT of folks, I find designer Anthony Varrecchia (above) to be sooo sexy. I’ve been meaning to point out, by the way, that I try to feature a wide range of InstaHunks – younger, older, muscular, beefy, bear-y, all races…Someone made a remark to me a few months ago on my ‘lack of diversity’ in the choices of eye-candy and I was like…whaaaat?

NY Times: Just hours after Donald Trump had Lt. Colonel Alex Vindman escorted from the White House, Trump has fired Gordon D. Sondland, the ambassador to the European Union. Both testified in the House impeachment inquiry into Trump’s alleged quid pro quo with Ukraine.

New Hampshire: Two new polls show Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg leading the pack in the upcoming New Hampshire primary. A new NBC News/Marist poll finds Sanders gets support from 25 percent of likely Democratic primary voters in the Granite State, while Buttigieg gets support from 21 percent. The Boston Globe/Suffolk University poll puts the two even closer with Sanders at 24 percent and Buttigieg at 23 percent.

Courthouse News: At a record 20.4 million voters, California officials announced Thursday over 80% of the state’s eligible voters are registered to vote in next month’s Super Tuesday primary – the highest rate for a presidential primary since 1952. California Secretary of State Alex Padilla says there are currently over 3 million more registered voters compared to a similar point in the 2016 presidential election.

Washington Post: Just days after the earth saw its warmest January on record, Antarctica has broken its warmest temperature ever recorded. A reading of 65 degrees was taken at Esperanza Base along Antarctica’s Trinity Peninsula on Thursday, making it the ordinarily frigid continent’s highest measured temperature in history.

ABC News: In a rare dissent within party ranks, Republican Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont said during a news conference that he believes Donald Trump abused his power and shouldn’t be in office. He added the U.S. Senate should have been allowed to hear more from witnesses who could have provided evidence about the charges against Trump.

KIT212: Kenneth rounds up the what’s what in local gay rags across the country, like Ben McLaughlin and Lee Gonzalez on the cover of Chicago’s GRAB Magazine.

Latest New Hampshire Poll Shows Tight 4-Way Race With Buttigieg Slightly Ahead

Photo of Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Mayor Pete Buttigieg
L-R Sen. Bernie Sanders, Mayor Pete Buttigieg

The latest poll from Monmouth University shows Pete Buttigieg with a slight lead in the upcoming New Hampshire primary.

Of the Democratic voters polled, 20% expressed support for Buttigieg, 19% for former Vice President Joe Biden, 18% for Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and 15% for Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

The survey also showed 7% of Democratic voters remain undecided.

Buttigieg Takes The Lead In New Hampshire Poll

Via WMUR:

Mayor Pete Buttigieg has surged to the head of the Democratic presidential field in first-in-nation primary state New Hampshire, according to a new poll of likely primary voters released Tuesday.

The Saint Anselm College Survey Center poll of 255 likely Democratic primary voters shows that Buttigieg, supported by 25 percent, now holds a 10 percentage point lead over former Vice President Joe Biden and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who are tied for second at 15 percent. Buttigieg is substantially ahead of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is in fourth place at 9 percent.

Rounding out the top 10 were Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar at 6 percent; billionaire activist Tom Steyer of California at 5 percent; U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey at 3 percent each; entrepreneur Andrew Yang of New York at 2 percent and California Sen. Kamala Harris at 1 percent. Thirteen percent of those polled said they were undecided.

Respondents were also asked who was the strongest candidate to go head to head against Donald Trump in the general election, and Biden leads in that lane by a mile.

Poll: Harris Moves Into 2nd Place In New Hampshire Poll

The latest New Hampshire primary poll conducted by Saint Anselm College shows Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) moving into second place while Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) drops to fifth place.

• Former Vice President Joe Biden 21% (-2)
• Sen. Kamala Harris 18% (+11)
• Sen. Elizabeth Warren 17% (+8)
• Mayor Pete Buttigieg 12% (+1)
• Sen. Bernie Sanders 10% (-6)
• Entrepreneur Andrew Yang 5%
• Se. Amy Klobuchar 3% (+1)
• Author Marianne Williamson 2% (new)
• Sen. Cory Booker 1%
• Rep. Tulsi Gabbard 1%
• Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand 1%

The survey did not include other candidates: former U.S. Housing Secretary Julian Castro, former U.S. Rep. John Delaney, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, U.S. Reps. Seth Moulton and Tim Ryan, Sen. Michael Bennet, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock.

NH Lawmaker Defends His Support For ‘Ex-Gay’ Torture

 New Hampshire state lawmaker and Republican candidate for Congress, Steve Negron, defended his decision to vote for allowing gay kids to be tortured through so-called "conversion therapy" during an interview with local station WMUR last month.
New Hampshire lawmaker Steve Negron

 New Hampshire state lawmaker and Republican candidate for Congress, Steve Negron, defended his decision to vote for allowing gay kids to be tortured through so-called “conversion therapy” during an interview with local station WMUR last month.

Via Talking Points Memo:

“I did not vote for that. I believe that’s something that, when you look at these young children that are trying to make a decision, and I remember when I was 15-16 I was confused, I had a lot of options in my life,” he said during a late August Facebook Live interview with WMUR, the state’s largest TV station.

“I think we need to be able to help them understand what it is, give them the right information, and let them get the treatment that they need to understand what the situation is,” Negron continued. “And I think the parents have a huge role in that as well.”

As I’ve reported over and over here on The Randy Report, major medical groups – including the American Psychological Association – have condemned the practice as extremely harmful saying it can lead to depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, hurt self-esteem and lead to substance abuse and risky sexual behaviors.

New Hampshire Approves Gender Identity Law, Bans “Ex-Gay Therapy”

New Hampshire’s LGBT advocates celebrated GOP Gov. Chris Sununu for signing into law a new bill which prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity.

The transgender rights bill passed the New Hampshire House by 195-129 votes, and in the Senate with all Democrats in favor and enough Republicans in support to pass it, 14-10.

“Discrimination – in any form – is unacceptable and runs contrary to New Hampshire’s Live Free or Die Spirit,” Sununu said in a statement after signing House Bill 1319.

But wait – Sununu wasn’t done.

He also signed on Friday legislation banning so-called conversion therapy for gay minors.

Connecticut, California, Nevada, New Jersey, the District of Columbia, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont, New York, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Washington, Maryland, Hawaii and now New Hampshire all have laws or regulations protecting youth from this abusive practice.

A growing number of municipalities have also enacted similar protections, including cities and counties in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Washington, Florida, New York, Arizona, and Wisconsin.

There is no credible evidence that conversion therapy can change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression. To the contrary, research has clearly shown that these practices pose devastating health risks for LGBTQ young people such as depression, decreased self-esteem, substance abuse, homelessness, and even suicidal behavior. The harmful practice is condemned by every major medical and mental health organization, including the American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association and American Medical Association.

Good on you, New Hampshire!

New Hampshire State Senate Approves Transgender Non-Discrimination Protections

The New Hampshire state Senate, by a 14-10 vote margin, has approved a bill that will add gender identity to the state’s nondiscrimination law.

New Hampshire is the only state in the New England area without transgender protections in its non-discrimination law.

Notable – both chambers of the state legislature are controlled by Republicans.

Openly gay state Rep. Ed Butler (D) introduced the measure in the House as HB 1319, which was approved in March by a vote of 195-129, with 51 Republican votes.

Gov. Chris Sununu (R) has indicated he will sign the bill into law.

New Hampshire: 8-Year-Old Biracial Boy “Lynched” By Teenagers

(image via Facebook)

An 8-year-old bi-racial boy was hung from a tree by a 14-year-old boy in Claremont, New Hampshire.

Via RawStory:

According to the victim’s grandmother Lorrie Slattery, he was playing with a group of children and teens when they began to taunt him with racist epithets and throw sticks and rocks at him.

Someone stood on a picnic table and the group wrapped a rope from a nearby tire swing around the boy’s throat, then kicked him off the table.

The victim swung back and forth three times before he was able to free himself. None of the teens came to his aid.

NH1.com said Chief Chase refused to state whether the crime was racially motivated.

The incident, which took place on August 28, has locals up in arms as the police have appeared to be more interested in protecting the alleged perpetrator than finding justice for the victim.

Claremont Police Chief Mark Chase refused to comment on the case saying his department is still investigating. He also noted that those involved are juveniles and that they should be “protected.”

“Mistakes they make as a young child should not have to follow them for the rest of their life,” Chase said.

As the boy was being flown to medical treatment, his mother took to Facebook denouncing the attack, “So my son is being flown to Dartmouth after a 14-year-old kid decided to hang him from a tree. I don’t care if this was a so called accident or not. My son almost died because of some little sh*t teenage kids.”

Since Donald Trump’s election, the U.S. has seen a spike in hate crimes.