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07/09/2009

Well he's already stunted the judiciary -- why not the legislature?

by Jeremy Hooper

When your career has been defined by stripping away the civil equality of your fellow citizens, what do you do for a second act? Andrew-PugnoWell if you're Andrew Pugno, anti-gay attorney and author/supporter/defender of Prop 8, you make a bid for the state Assembly:

Andrew Pugno, who began his political career as an aide to an anti-gay state senator and eventually made a legal career representing marriage equality opponents, has filed the papers necessary to run for the California Assembly in 2010.

The Proposition 8 author said his campaign has raised a quarter of a million dollars from fundraising efforts utilizing mailing lists of Yes on 8 contributors.

Pugno, 36, filed his paperwork with the secretary of state June 2. He is seeking the Republican nomination in the state's 5th Assembly District, which encompasses portions of Sacramento and Placer counties, including Fair Oaks, Folsom, and Granite Bay. Assemblyman Roger Niello (R), who has represented the district since 2004, will be termed out of office next year.

Prop 8 author seeks Assembly seat as fundraising questions arise [BAR]

Bad news for gays. Yet good news for Dubya Bush, as he has just been knocked down a peg on many gays' "Candidates I Could Not Support any Less" list.

We'll have to wait and see if Andy P's on to something here. But we won't have to wait and see if Andy Pees on American freedoms, as we've already seen him do that unfortunate, society-weaking trick.

**A big question on many gay activist's minds: Have the Prop 8 supporters violated any laws by trying to raise funds for Andy under the auspices of the Yes on 8 campaign? And it's clear that the Yes on 8 folks realize the hot water potential here, as a recent email from the group includes this note:

CLARIFICATION: Before we tell you about an urgent new threat to Proposition 8 in California, we wanted to issue this clarification. Recently, some of you may have received a letter or email from me, Ron Prentice, the chairman of the ProtectMarriage.com coalition, personally endorsing a candidate for a California Assembly seat. Regrettably, the communications may have prompted confusion. The ProtectMarriage.com coalition does not, and never will, officially endorse candidates for office. However, the communications – despite the disclaimer that the use of the Yes on 8 logo was for identification purposes only – were not as clear as they should have been in distinguishing between my personal endorsement and a position of the Protect Marriage organization. ProtectMarriage.com does not engage in partisan politics and neither endorses nor opposes candidates for political office. In fact, members of the coalition represent a broad range of political perspectives. While the organization strongly urges voters to support candidates of all parties who will defend traditional marriage as a union between a man and a woman, the organization pledges to maintain a policy of strict neutrality regarding individual candidates. Please accept my apology for the confusion.

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Your thoughts

Ah yes... Pugno has his office not too far from me. I didn't realize he was running for office. And knowing that district, he will probably get the seat no problem. Thank goodness we passed redistricting. But I haven't heard anything recent about it as last I heard dems were trying to hold it up because they didn't want to lose power. It doesn't matter to them (or pugno) that have equally represented districts is better for everyone. Pugno and Dems... they're all snakes. This may be the first election I simply protest against someone. I can stand outside his office with signs. If I took a picture would you put it up?

Posted by: Pomo | Jul 9, 2009 5:13:08 PM

So if you care about equality register voters in his district so when reapportionment happens he will be a one term wonder. Also, District 5 is a district the Democratic Party can snatch with the right candidate, but Pugno probably knows where to find the fundamentalist gravy train so he will be difficult to fend off.

Republicans only have a .88 percent registration advantage according to May 2009 registration reports.

But we do not know about decline to state voters and their views.

Sadly I disagree with the Democratic Party on how to solve California's fiscal issues, but I disagree with the Republicans being a wholly owned subsidiary of traditional values groups, so I have no real political party to support.

Posted by: Matt from California | Jul 9, 2009 7:36:41 PM

Advocacy groups, like "yes on h8" can raise tons of money, and NONE of it is subject to the limitations that apply to elected officials who are running for office. But, the caveat is that they cannot support anyone who is running for office - period. To do so, would make their supports subject to the exact same limitations that those who support candidates are subjected to. AND, it could make them (the yes on h8'ers) criminally liable too boot - like money launderer Tom Delay.

If "yes on h8" paid to mail out those letters, or provided other in-kind support to Puqno, then they could still be in some legal hot water, apology notwithstanding.

Posted by: Dick Mills | Jul 9, 2009 8:06:34 PM

MATT, you should become Libertarian like me. They were openly supportive of GLBT rights before it was cool. Fiscally conservative. Socially permissible.

Posted by: Pomo | Jul 9, 2009 9:29:08 PM

Energy may be best served by promoting the Democrat in the race, Larry Miles. A Sheila Kuehl protege, he has served the LGBT community incredibly well. Anyone who knows the trouble Sacramento's gay and lesbian community has had with the slavic evangelical movement can appreciate the work Miles did to negotiate peace on the campuses of the largest school district in the state (with 100,000 slavic speaking citizens.) Miles ran and beat Tom McClintock's right wing Mormon aide, Lance Christiansen, and he belongs to a reconciling congregation that has wed and supports same-sex couples. If you don't like Pugno, put some love into Miles campaign coffers. http://www.larrymilesforassembly.com

Posted by: notsosure | Jul 9, 2009 10:01:39 PM

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