Oy! We do not envy the Democratic National Committee at the moment. Not only are they fighting what’s become an increasingly tough presidential election, but they’re about to have a full-fledged discrimination trial!
After months of discovery and mediation, talks between the DNC and Donald Hitchcock failed yesterday. For those of you not paying attention, Hitchcock once served as the DNC’s gay outreach officer, but found himself sacked soon after his boyfriend, Paul Yandura, wrote an open letter criticizing the DNC’s gay politics.
The party organ, said Yandura, simply used gays as an ATM without fully incorporating them into the party. Hitchcock claims he was fired for political revenge. He also claims the DNC paid him less and marginalized gay outreach. The DNC and Chairman Howard Dean deny these claims, of course.
The two sides have been hashing it out for months, but mediation failed yesterday. And, according to Hitchcock, he couldn’t be more upset:
I am profoundly disappointed that our final mediation attempt has failed.
Over the last 18 months, I have in good faith initiated multiple attempts to resolve this matter, including before this lawsuit was even filed.
I have always desired a resolution that was true to the facts and fair to both parties, as of today, that seems to not be possible and a trial is imminent. However, I am a loyal and committed Democrat and this election cycle is not only important to me but is of paramount importance to the country and my LGBT brothers and sisters.
After this important election, I look forward to having my day in court and having justice served.
Hitchcock lawyer Lynne Bernabei seems to blame the DNC and their legal team, writing in a letter yesterday, “Although we have participated in over six separate efforts at settlement, the defendants clearly have no interest in resolving this case through mediation.” Perhaps he means “pay-off.” The DNC reportedly tried to give Hitchcock $100,000 to drop the matter. He refused.
Pretrial goes down on October 20, but the true action doesn’t begin until after the election, thankfully.