The television station CBS 13 is being credited with outing California State Sen. Roy Ashburn, arrested on DUI charges this week after leaving a gay bar. But as more details unfurl, we learn other reporters knew Ashburn — whose voting record is anti-gay, are as his public pronouncements — is a homo. And they were tipped off by one guy who says after he first spotted Ashburn, he called the local media, but nobody would carry his story.
Our tipster is hanging on to his anonymity, but here’s his story (submitted to Queerty as a defense of Sacramento’s gay community, in fact):
I noticed on your blog today that you’re being a little critical of the Sacramento gay community for not outing Roy Ashburn sooner. Well, let me tell you it’s not for the lack of trying.
I’d heard rumors that he was out at gay bars early last year. I then finally saw him myself. When I did, I called several reporters I know (I do political media consulting work) who all told me basically the same thing — it’s his personal life, we don’t care (despite his horrid voting record.)
Since then, I have been looking for ways to do this. If you’re going to out a prominent politician, you don’t do it half-assedly — like taking a blurry cell phone picture and posting on a blog someplace. That’s chickenshit and easily deniable.
Then he got a DUI. I knew from a few folks that he’d been at Latin Night at Faces (the manager will deny she saw him because under CA law a bar can be held liable if a patron gets a DUI) so I prompted several reporters to head over with a picture of him and confirm that he was there.
The Ch. 13 reporter did just that — and has made national news because of it.
And in [West Sacramento Mayor] Christopher Cabaldon’s defense — he did try outing Roy several times. Again, the MSM didn’t take the bait.
So, Roy is out. Yes, it took a little time but like I said, it wasn’t for the lack of trying. So, please don’t beat up on my city and my community. That is not fair.
Some great background information. And a worthwhile point about why Faces’ manager would choose not to say whether Ashburn was in the bar that night.
More people like the source above, please. Anti-gay politicians — whose decisions affect the real lives of LGBT Americans — who themselves are gay should be forced to face their actions.
Meanwhile, some Facebook details on the still-unidentified guy from the gay bar who was in Ashburn’s car during the arrest.