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Florida’s Gay Dems Disappointed With Obama Campaign

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Barack Obama‘s currently beefing up his foreign policy experience with a trip abroad, but the presidential hopeful may need to smooth things over here at home.

Leaders within Florida’s gay Democratic caucus balked this weekend after the Obama campaign “slighted” their annual meeting by not sending his wife, Michelle, who appeared at a gay event in New York last month.

The leader of the Florida Democratic Party’s gay caucus, declaring that “I’m sick and tired of getting table scraps,” complained Saturday that Sen. Barack Obama offended a large and faithful voting bloc by not sending his wife or another top campaign surrogate to the group’s annual meeting.

“Personally, as president of the Florida GLBT Democratic caucus, I must say I’m very disappointed,” Michael Albetta said. “I am not taking this too kindly and politely. They were giving us names such as Bill Richardson, who was supposed to come here, Congressman John Lewis, who was supposed to be here.”

As the meeting ended, Albetta said several representatives of the Obama campaign phoned him to apologize.

Albetta, who was neutral in the primaries, added that “I’m sick and tired of getting table scraps. I want to sit at the table with all of them. To them, they don’t understand — you know, ‘Give a little here, give a little there’ — that doesn’t fly. The thing is that we have to stand up for our rights.”

Albetta and others acknowledge that Obama’s better on gay rights than rival John McCain, but activists are quick to remind the Senator and his campaign that he needs their support. And the Obama campaign’s definitely working overtime to reassure worried voters, with Gustavo Rivera, who coordinates state-based constituency outreach, promising: “I know you cannot be ignored. We know that without your support, we will not win this state — but if we win this state, we win the presidency. It’s as simple as that.”

By:           Andrew Belonksy
On:           Jul 21, 2008
Tagged: , , , , ,
  • 33 Comments
    • ian
      ian

      “I know you cannot be ignored. We know that without your support, we will not win this state — but if we win this state, we win the presidency. It’s as simple as that.”

      even when they need us THAT bad…
      they still ignore us
      really
      think about it
      if we could get every gay man and woman in FL to actually show up at the polls and bring a friend… the dems win the white house…

      there have to be numbers out there about the number of the gehs who did NOT vote last time…

      if it is power and only power they respond to lets make em work for it…

      the tone of the statement above seems to me to be… “sorry we missed your damn rubber chicken dinner ladies… but if you dont want to be under mccains control then just shut up… you have no one else to vote for… so… tough”

      is it just me or did anyone else read that into it?

      Jul 21, 2008 at 3:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mark
      mark

      GIRL get over yourself

      Jul 21, 2008 at 3:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tom
      Tom

      Wah, wah, wah. No one went to the little dinner down there in crackerbarrel land.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 3:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • nobama
      nobama

      Please if obama calls and apologizes Albetta will cream his pants.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 5:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • emb
      emb

      “I know you cannot be ignored. We know that without your support, we will not win this state — but if we win this state, we win the presidency. It’s as simple as that.”

      Ian, I think you just read a lot more acid into that comment than’s actually there. Thing is, there are only the two of ‘em, and they can’t be everywhere. Florida’s important to be sure, but it’s not the only state there is.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 6:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CHURCHILL-Y
      CHURCHILL-Y

      No Albetta you’re not even “getting table scraps” all you’re getting is the One finger salute by Senator Hussein.
      I mean the only reason MRS. Hot Ghetto Mess/Militant Michelle went to a Gay event in New york was to get some cash from those delusional
      Fat cat Queers. You ain’t got no CHEESE down there in FL Albetta so you ain’t gonna see them much. Less now that he has an almost secured
      shoo-in with the Evangelical bigots.

      CHANGE #1: Barack Obama says he’s against The California Ballot Measure Banning Gay Marriage Despite His repeated Assertion That Marriage Is Between A Man And A Woman.

      Despite his so called ’support’ for GLBT rights he’s on record for also saying that a second class citizen status such as a civil partnership a la Vermont is his preferred resolution for the issue and goes beyond and says that the issue should be left up to individual States to decide upon. We shouldn’t be entitled to the same rights and protections his family has but he’s Okay with the California Supreme Court decision. Until it gets voted down in November by the public then another flip-flop on the making.

      CHANGE#2: While Obama says he will support a repeal of DADT once he’s president as a senator he hasn’t co-sponsored MREA ( The Military Readiness Enhancement Act, a bill to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”) in both the 109th and 110th congress.

      CHANGE #3: Despite Pledging To Withdraw American Troops From Iraq Immediately, Barack Obama Now Says He Would “Refine” His Policy After Listening To The Commanders On The Ground

      CHANGE #4: Despite Pledging To Accept Public Financing, Barack Obama Has Reversed His Position And Opted Out Of The System

      CHANGE #5: Barack Obama Is Backtracking On His Support For Unilaterally Renegotiating NAFTA

      CHANGE #6: Barack Obama Is Considering Reducing Corporate Taxes Despite Having Called Corporate Tax Cuts “The Exact Wrong Prescription For America”

      CHANGE #7: Barack Obama Has Changed Positions On Handgun Ban

      CHANGE #8: As A Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama Criticizes The Administration’s Energy Policy Despite Having Voted For The 2005 Bush-Cheney Energy Bill

      CHANGE #9: Barack Obama Has Shifted From Opposing Welfare Reform To Celebrating Welfare Reform

      CHANGE #10: Barack Obama Has Shifted Positions On Nuclear Power

      CHANGE #11: During The Primaries, Barack Obama Pledged To Filibuster Any Bill Which Contained Immunity For Telecommunications Companies Involved In Electronic Surveillance, But Now he has voted in favor of FISA while Senator Clinton voted against it.

      CHANGE #12: Barack Obama Disagreed With The Supreme Court Decision Striking Down The Use Of The Death Penalty For A Convicted Child Rapist Although In The Past He Opposed The Death Penalty

      CHANGE #13: Barack Obama Has Backtracked From His Earlier Commitment To Meet With The Leaders Of State Sponsors Of Terror “Without Precondition”

      CHANGE #14: After Saying Jerusalem Should Be “Undivided,” Barack Obama Has Since Backtracked

      CHANGE #15: As A Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama Has Backed Away From His Earlier Support For Normalized Relations With Cuba And Ending The Embargo

      CHANGE #16: Barack Obama Says That “Mental Distress” Should Not Be Reason For A Late Term Abortion Which Contradicts His Past Pro-Choice Views

      CHANGE #17: Barack Obama has come out in full support and expressed his desire to expand on Bush’s faith based initiative programs although he has said previously that he values this Nations principle of the separation of church and state.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 7:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      Allow me to boil this down:
      Boohoo. We had a party and Obama didn’t come. He was in “Iraq” or some such place. I think we’re having a war there or something. *Whatever.* And then some troll posted his usual laundry list. The end.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 7:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • eric
      eric

      I’ve heard a lot about how the marriage between his parents would have been illegal in several states when he was born. Let’s say my (hypothetical, i’m not quite there yet) kid runs for president in fifty years: he or she might say that the marriage between his or her parents would have been illegal in 48 states, and no federal benefits for those marriages performed in California and Massachusetts. And I doubt Barack Obama will be seen as much of a crusader to change this systematic violation of the human rights of the GLBT community.

      I really can’t compromise on an issue as important to me as this; I have enough self-respect to feel comfortable with that decision and staying at home in November.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 8:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      Eric, were any leaders of the Civil Rights Movement elected president?

      Jul 21, 2008 at 8:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lawrence
      Lawrence

      None of this should be a surprise to anyone–Obama has flatly said that he thinks marriage is between a man and a woman…and that since he’s a christian he doesn’t think marriages between two people of the same gender should be sanctified.

      This is inexcusable, especially for a Democrat in this day and age. Until we stopped accepting such mediocre treatment, we’ll continue to be treated this way.

      This will be the first year since I could vote that I will be staying home on election day.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 10:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      Hmmm. So which candidate did you vote for in the past that openly supported same-sex marriage?

      Jul 21, 2008 at 11:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lawrence
      Lawrence

      I have never voted and will never vote for anyone who comes out and says that they don’t think we are entitled to equal civil rights.

      Anyone who would vote for someone who feels they aren’t worthy of equal legal status ought to look deep within themselves as to why.

      At least Hillary never tried to moralize the issue the way Barack has.

      Jul 21, 2008 at 11:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • banshiii
      banshiii

      give em’ hell Michael!

      Jul 21, 2008 at 11:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      Wait a minute, you’re moving the goal post here. First, you claim to be, for the first time, “staying home on election day” because Obama doesn’t support same-sex marriage. It seems that you’ve realized how ridiculous such a statement is once it is considered that no other major party presidential candidate has ever publicly supported same-sex marriage. You have now moved on to claim that Hillary was OK because she didn’t “moralize” the issue – but isn’t the resulting policy stance the same? Didn’t her husband sign the Defense of Marriage Act? It appears you are quite confused.

      Anyway, my first question still remains. Who did you vote for in the past that openly supported same-sex marriage? It’s hardly fair to castigate Obama because he actually gets ASKED a question that would have never been asked in the past. In 1980, no one asked Carter or Reagan how they stood on this issue. In 1984, no one asked Mondale or Reagan. In 1988, no one asked Bush or Dukakis. I could go on, but I think you get the picture. How do you think ANY of them would have responded to the question of same-sex marriage? Do you think ANY of them would have said they supported it? Get real. And answer the question: Who did you vote for in the past?

      Jul 22, 2008 at 12:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lawrence
      Lawrence

      Hillary did not sign DOMA, Bill did.

      No political candidate has every openly supported gay marriage as you know. Therefore I have never voted for a candidate who supported gay marriage.

      But I will never reward anyone with my vote who takes the position that Obama takes. Why you or any other self-respecting gay or lesbian might feel this is acceptable is beyond me.

      In 1984 marriage was not even thinkable for us, today it is already legal in two states and recognized in New York. Such a comparison doesn’t make any sense given how far we’ve come.

      We are living in a time where enough progress has been made that it is feasible for a democrat to have balls and actually stand up for us.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 12:08 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      I find Obama’s position acceptable because I am not a political neophyte. I understand and accept that, under a democratic republic, progress only occurs through compromise. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we have never elected a civil rights activist to the White House. Never, ever. That’s because activists have the luxury of refusing to compromise on anything. The liability that comes with that is unelectability. That’s OK though, activists have their vital role to play in a democracy just as politicians have theirs, but one should be careful about confusing the two.

      I am not a single-issue voter. I find many areas of policy to be of vital importance to the country. On a host of issues that matter to me, Obama represents a superior choice. You seem to think that democracy is about getting everything you want in a candidate. However, I recognize that democracy is about choosing the best option out of those that I am presented with. All candidates are flawed as all humans are flawed. I accept that and act accordingly. If you cannot, then you are better off sitting out the electoral process altogether, which appears to be what you’ve chosen.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 12:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lawrence
      Lawrence

      Would you vote for a candidate that said they didn’t believe that two people of different races should be allowed to marry?

      Would you vote for a candidate that said that two Jews shouldn’t be allowed to marry?

      Jul 22, 2008 at 12:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      Lawrence,

      You’re right Hillary didn’t sign DOMA, Bill did and as his WIFE she supported it WHOLE HEARTEDLY. And why is Churchshit-Y be so ignorant is still posting that OLD ASS post from 2 weeks ago…UGH

      We all know them folks in Florida will not support Obama we know McCain will carry that state.

      And Lawrence the day a Presidential candidate will support everything for LGBT. Racism, sexism will be no more. So don’t go looking for it anytime soon.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 1:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      You have to put it in context, Lawrence.

      Imagine it is 1960 (the civil rights movement is in full swing) and I am presented with two candidates. Candidate #1 is wrong (for me) on nearly every issue. Candidate #2 is right on most issues. His civil rights stance is ok in that he supports desegregation and the Voting Rights Act, but is flawed in that he is unwilling to say that he supports the civil rights movement as a whole (this probably includes interracial marriage). I could function as a democratic citizen and choose the best candidate. I would vote for Candidate #2. And you know what, that’s exactly what people did in 1960 and that’s how JFK got elected.

      I quote from Wikipedia:
      “As President, Kennedy initially believed the grassroots movement for civil rights would only anger many Southern whites and make it even more difficult to pass civil rights laws through Congress, which was dominated by Southern Democrats, and he distanced himself from it. As a result, many civil rights leaders viewed Kennedy as unsupportive of their efforts.”

      Jul 22, 2008 at 1:34 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dan
      Dan

      PUMA types are motivated by:

      1 – Bitterness
      2 – Ignorance
      3 – Racism

      In that order. That is all.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 1:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • marcus
      marcus

      Let us not forget that it is legal, without a warrant, for the president to tap your phone, demand your e-mail from your internet provider and spy on you in whatever way he sees fit and Mr. Obama voted for this, and Hilary did not. And please don’t think that he is going to bust his ass doing anything for us,
      saying what you are for, and fighting for it are 2 different things. It really does not matter who wins president, because they are all the same in the end. I say vote him in and let us just learn one more lesson because obviously we have not learned enough. America is a mess, the war, the mortgage crises, the national debt, the economy. I am so sure that the issues of LGBT’s are going to be seen as important to anyone the next 4 to 8 years.
      And let us all hope that California does not choose to ban gay marriage, because if it does, thats the end and you might as well pack up and move to another country because it will be 100 years before we see any real progress. Sometimes a country does not change for the better and people are forced to leave and look for liberty elsewhere. People have been doing it since the begining of history.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 3:01 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • marcus
      marcus

      PUMA types are motivated by:
      1 – Bitterness
      2 – Ignorance
      3 – Racism
      In that order. That is all.

      Do you have proof of this or is this just some crap you come up with because you are incapable of making your point based on
      facts? And the racism point is pathetic.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 3:09 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • eric
      eric

      OK, first of all, when I compared the status of marriage forty years ago to the status of marriage today, I was not implying any comparison to the civil rights movement. That’s a completely different struggle in different times.

      What I mean is that if a candidate is invoking the inequality he or she has faced, that candidate should be prepared to stand up against that inequality. Obama hasn’t done that.

      And rest assured that I am not a single-issue voter, and that this is far from the only reason I am not supporting Obama (or McCain). But that’s a different discussion.

      Sometimes it comes down to ‘who’s going to do this if i’m not?’ If every GLBT American decided to stay home in November, I’m sure the candidates would take note. There’s no time like the present. When else are we going to do this, people?

      Jul 22, 2008 at 3:12 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Steve
      Steve

      Obama is less bad than the Republican candidate.
      That doesn’t mean he is pure good. It mostly means that his opponent is so extremely bad.

      Obama has hinted that he might be willing to do some civil-rights things for gays. But he can’t come right out and make those promises, because he also needs votes from other people who still hate gays.

      Get over it, people. Politics isn’t about voting only for the perfect candidates. Politics is mostly about compromise. And, that often means voting for the one that makes you puke less than the alternative.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 4:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AJ
      AJ

      I think most of you are missing the point of Lawrence’s and others argument-
      I believe that he’s stating, and I obviously agree with him, that how someone who has suffered and is still suffering from discrimination could put that same burden on others. Segregation is the same as discrimination. How could Senator Obama, tell the LGBT community that we should have the same rights as our hetero counterparts, ONLY if we live in California or Massachusetts. The statement contradicts itself and we should expect more from a Democrat nominee whom suffered directly from discrimination. In 2000, I joined the Army and always expected to return back home in Florida, but I met a German man who I currently live with in Berlin because immigration is a federal policy and he can’t come back with me. Should Obama be saying-“ There are not two Americas, there is only one America and when I’m President, Bi-national couples in committed relationships, like AJ, will always have a place in California or Massachusetts, 2000 miles from his family instead of 5000 miles.” This is not equality by any means… I just think he needs to revise his position on this. Senator Mccain voted against the FMA, and he’s the REPUBLICAN nominee now, it didn’t hurt his career and I think Obama could do the same. I wouldn’t say that Mccain would be better for us, but Obama is certainly not the best for us!

      Jul 22, 2008 at 4:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      Hey AJ,

      Then who is??????? certainly not Hillary because she believes the same. And it’s kind of irritating to me that some folks are holding a higher standard to Obama because of race…what about gender?????? if so do you all hold Hillary to the same?

      Unfortunately what needs to be understood is this to the country as a whole Gay marriage is not one of the TOP 10 issues to tackle. It may be to us, but not to them sad but true.

      However, I have said this over, and over again even if Obama, or Clinton supported Gay Marriage it would not matter. The people who makes it law are your US Representatives and US Senators……..

      PRESS THEM TO MAKE IT LAW, NOT BARACK BECAUSE HE CAN BE OVERIDDEN EASILY.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 6:49 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lawrence
      Lawrence

      If you just substitute “race” or “religion” instead of “LGBT” in these posts then the issue becomes much simpler.

      There would be no debating whether or not anyone should support a candidate who says that blacks or jews or women are not entitled to the same civil rights as everyone else, plain and simple.

      But gay and lesbian people are the last group in this country it is ok to still shit on, so even some of us are willing to hold our noses and pull the lever for a democrat who refuses to stand up for us and do the right thing, and under the guise of “christianity.”

      My civil rights are not up for debate or discussion. I hope you all take yourselves seriously enough to say the same one day.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 7:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AJ
      AJ

      Hey Mr C,

      If Hillary were the nominee, I would be saying the exact same about her. But that’s a hypothetical situation, Hillary is not our current candidate, Senator Obama is and yes, he should be held to a higher standard now. Not because of his race but because he is the TOP representative of the Democrat Party, which includes a large portion of the LGBT community.

      I only referenced race because he, as a person born during miscegenation laws, should know that marriage laws; when reserved for the state’s discretion, can only lead to discrimination and can never be equal. He shouldn’t compromise when it comes to basic liberties, such as marriage, just to appeal to republicans. In my opinion, I think, Senator Obama truly believes in same-sex marriage, but he just doesn’t want to publicize it, which really doesn’t make him too much of a great leader on gay rights.

      Again, he’s a great candidate for other reasons, but not for gay rights, in my opinion.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 8:36 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      Point taken AJ,

      And I can truly respect your views.

      Well said! But you’re never find a candidate that’s going out on a limb for Gay rights…….It hurts to say that but it’s very true. The rest of this country just wouldn’t stand for it. And God forbid if they leave it to the states…Then what?????

      And Lawrence I understand what you are saying. As for me having civil rights as a Black in some ways is still a challlenge in 2008. I am for us gays being included in civil rights. But there is no such thing as GAY RIGHTS. It’s called CIVIL RIGHTS and all should be treated fairly under that.

      I am not going there in reference to not voting because of Gay Marriage that is something that will work itself out as more people hearts become accepting to the issue. By the way there is a whole lot of biasness and problems we have in this community and that needs to addressed. Before puttiing on rings and saying I

      Jul 22, 2008 at 9:58 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      Point taken AJ,

      And I can truly respect your views.

      Well said! But you’re never going to find a candidate that’s going out on a limb for some Gay issues…….
      It hurts to say that but it’s very true.
      The rest of this country just wouldn’t stand for it.
      And God forbid if they leave it to the states…
      Then what?????

      Lawrence, I understand what you are saying. As for me civil rights as a Black Male in some ways is still a challlenge in 2008 believe it or not.
      I am all for us gays being included in civil rights as we should. But there is no such thing as GAY RIGHTS. It’s called CIVIL RIGHTS and all should be treated fairly under that act.

      I am not going there in reference to not voting because of Gay Marriage that is something that will work itself out as more people hearts become accepting to the issue and I have other things in my life that are more important and are at stake with this election.

      By the way there is a whole lot of biasness and problems we have in this community and that needs to addressed before puttiing on rings and saying I do and unfortunatetly a year later saying I don’t what was the fight for????

      I want us to have that right even if you never get married. But we all need to get along with each other as well whereas we all can benefit from these rights not just some.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 10:07 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AJ
      AJ

      Thanks, the same with your views.

      A candidate to support full-equality? No, not in this 2008 cycle. Atleast no one who would have had a chance.
      There was Gravel and that guy who looked like the creature from “lord of the rings” searching for his precious, Kucinich, but they had no real chance.
      I think Al Gore would had been the best choice with aspects to gay rights, the environment and the economy. What do you think?

      Jul 22, 2008 at 10:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • blackiemiko
      blackiemiko

      A vote for McCain or not for Obama is against your own rights. There is no other way to get around it. Period.

      Jul 22, 2008 at 12:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      Al Gore would be great.

      But he’s HOLLYWOOD BIG DADDY now. He is much better in the awareness/fundraising mode now!

      Jul 25, 2008 at 5:14 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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