Press

Task Force Asks Clinton To Respond To Radio Ad

Date: 
October 18, 1996

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force today asked President Clinton to publicly repudiate a recent campaign radio ad that raised the ire of many in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. The 60 second radio ad promoted the President's support of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The ad, targeted to Christian radio stations, also promoted Clinton's opposition to late-term abortions. The Task Force learned today from campaign officials that the ad has since been removed.

In a letter faxed today to the President from executive director Melinda Paras, the Task Force stated that the ad "contributes to anti-gay bigotry." In addition to requesting a statement disavowing the ad, the Task Force asked that the campaign produce an ad highlighting the President's opposition to anti-gay discrimination and violence.

NGLTF, a non-partisan organization, does not endorse political candidates. Below is the letter in its entirety.

Dear Mr. President:

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is greatly disturbed by your campaign's airing of a radio advertisement promoting your support of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Proactively promoting your support of DOMA is an affront to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. It also contradicts your administration's stated characterization of DOMA as divisive and "one more attempt to divert the American people from the urgent need to confront our challenges together."

It is our understanding that the ad has just been removed. While we appreciate the removal, we ask that you publicly issue a statement repudiating the ad. As the airing of the ad perpetuates anti-gay bigotry, we also ask that your campaign develop and broadly air an ad highlighting your previously stated opposition to anti-gay discrimination and violence. Such actions would further our mutual goal of a united America. We look forward to your response on this important issue.

Sincerely,

Melinda Paras
Executive Director

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The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.