Remember when DNC asked the gays to donate cash at a June fundraiser? And we handed them a reported (but not verified) $1 million? Some of us remained supportive of the DNC, while others criticized it for, like the White House, refusing to forcefully act on LGBT legislation. And then just this week, the DNC, once again, failed to live up to its commitment to LGBTs when it purposefully omitted any mention of Maine’s Question 1 from a series of email blasts to supporters. To make matters worse, not only has the DNC so obviously been turning its back on queers, but now it’s been caught lying about it.
Hoping to generate support for the re-election bid of New Jersey’s Gov. Jon Corzine, the DNC sent out an 11th hour plea — including to Maine residents — hoping activists would put in calls to drum up votes. But now DNC treasurer and vociferous Obama defender Andy Tobias reveals his org lied about who those emails were sent to, according to information gleaned by John Aravosis. The blasts not only went out to New Jersey Democrats, but Mainers as well, who clearly had a more pressing issue on their hands: marriage equality. So how come that very issue went unaddressed in those emails, while an election in another state was given priority?
Not only does Tobias own the DNC’s misleading information about what happened with its Election Day outreach, he admits the DNC dropped the ball in Maine.
He writes to DNC donors: “A different email [from the Corzine-related one] went out to Mainers urging them to vote. As the only thing of substance anyone was voting on in Maine was Question One, and as Democratic activists vote our way, this was a small but positive effort to be helpful. I would have liked to see that email discuss No One One directly, in case there may have been an email-enabled Organizing for America activist someplace in Maine who did NOT know where Maine Democrats stood on this issue. (Out of the country without Internet access until the night before the election?) But I’m told there was concern that advocating specifically for a ballot initiative, whether LGBT or otherwise, would set a precedent for every other ballot initiative. Bureaucracies are nervous about setting precedents.”
Nervous about setting precedents? Moronic, but fine. But what’s all this anxiety about encouraging people to vote for civil rights and against discrimination? (Meanwhile, Aravosis points out that the DNC does have precedent for targeting specific ballot initiatives.)
Would Question 1 have failed, as we hoped, if the DNC’s emails addressed it directly? Maybe, maybe not. It’s hard to tell. But what’s evident is the DNC completely ignored the issue, and only afterward admitted its gross mistake.
This is an organization that, like the president, repeatedly treats the queer community with lip service, but when our rights are on the line, when it matters most to us, disappears into the . And what’s the point of amassing a huge network of supporters if you refuse to mobilize them on something so basic as civil rights?
We can already hear the criticism of our position: “What, you think the GOP is better?” No, it isn’t. But at least Republicans aren’t lying to our faces, pretending our issues are their concerns, begging us for cash, and then failing miserably to support us.
When it comes to fingerpointing in the wake of Maine’s marriage loss, perhaps it’s time to point the finger at each of us — if you’re among those supporting an organization actively trafficking in lying to and manipulating the LGBT community.