Press

Clinton Appeal To Christian Right Outrages Gays

Date: 
October 15, 1996

The Clinton campaign, in a move that has offended many in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community, released a 60 second radio ad highlighting the President's support of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The ad, targeted to Christian radio stations, also promotes Clinton's opposition to late-term abortions.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force called the ad "offensive, unfortunate, and damaging to the LGBT community." The Task Force released the following statement on this move by the Clinton campaign. The statement is attributable to executive director Melinda Paras.

Despite President Clinton's large lead in the polls, his campaign has chosen to release an ad that promotes homophobia. This radio ad is divisive, unfortunate and damaging to the LGBT community.

Indeed, this latest move by the Clinton campaign plays into the worst fears of our community -- that the Clinton Administration is a fair weather friend. How painful and ironic that thePresident himself said that he wants to "stop this election from degenerating into an attempt to pit one group of Americans against another." Although the President signed DOMA, he at least issued strong words against discrimination, violence, or intimidation on sexual orientation along with his signature. When will there be an ad by the Clinton campaign touting the President's ostensible opposition to anti-gay discrimination and violence?

Unfortunately, DOMA and this ad only fuel the flames of homophobia. Indeed, just this month a gay church in Montana was vandalized just after its pastor was prominently featured in the local media publicly criticizing DOMA and announcing her intention to continue to perform same-gender commitment ceremonies at her church. Stop gaybaiting and scapegoating to get conservative votes.

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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.