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08/06/2008

KS: Dim gay-baiting tactic gets Dem support

by Jeremy Hooper

Is something rotten in the state of Kansas' Democratic politics? Well, our pals at The Victory Fund are suggesting that if not fully rotten, then something slightly moldy certainly took place in a primary for an open House seat.

200808061031The dealie: Out lesbian Inga Taylor seemed to be the frontrunner in the Democratic primary for Kansas' 84th District House seat, outspending and out-organizing opponent Gail Finney. However, Finney ultimately won the primary, which was held last night. For the loss, many are pointing to a last-ditch effort from the Finney campaign, wherein they suddenly began using Inga Taylor's sexual orientation and her endorsement by the Victory Fund against her.

So what tactics were used? Well here's an email that had reportedly been sent around by Finnery surrogate Dr. Peggy Elliot on Monday:

Inga Taylor considers it an honor that if elected, she will be the 1st openly gay African American Legislator in the United States. If you will go to the www.victoryfund.com website, you will see that they are excited about the same and working strategically to ensure that this candidate wins the election on tomorrow evening. Who would she be representing? Those that fund her from the east coast or 84th District? Is this what we want to be known for in Kansas? In Wichita?

And here's a late campaign robo-call that featured Finney herself:


(If embedded audio doesn't load for you, you can listen to it here)

donkey-democratic-poop-pride-flagPretty unfair, right? Well the Victory Fund certainly thinks so. VP president and CEO Chuck Wolfe issued this statement about the situation:

“What’s the matter with Kansas Democrats? We plan for and expect openly gay candidates will face attacks from right-wing bigots, not Democratic party officials,” said Wolfe, adding, “This is divisive, gutter politics at its worst, and Gail Finney should be ashamed of herself.

And we have to agree on this one. Nobody wins with donkey-on-donkey gay-baiting!

Well actually that's not entirely true, since Finney did win. But at what cost victory?

Kansas lesbian loses Democratic primary after late, anti-gay politicking [Victory Fund]

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Your thoughts

Well... we definitely did have an agenda. Such as not being attacked physically and verbally, not having to live our lives in a sense of dread or fear... and actually being regarded as equal citizens and human beings. This was our agenda in trying to get Taylor elected and was something that Finney took a strong stance against. Very sad and it shows the quality of person that Finney is and how she is willing to do whatever it takes to get what she wants. I feel sorry for the people of Kansas. If someone is willing to sell themselves out to that degree just to get the seat, I can only imagine they must be at least as willing to sell out their constituency for their personal benefit.

Posted by: Russ Rouse | Aug 6, 2008 11:26:52 AM

Yep, democrats can be their own worst enemy. If I lived in Kansas (and thankfully I don't) I wouldn't vote for Gail Finney phony.

Posted by: johnozed | Aug 6, 2008 11:34:11 AM

Another reason to be ashamed of my state. Like I needed another one. Oh, and there's no Republican running for the seat, so she's got it locked. Hope she's proud of herself.

Posted by: Chris in Kansas | Aug 6, 2008 12:08:45 PM

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