Equality VA Backs McAuliffe, Rest of Democratic Ticket for 2013 Election
In a statement released today, Equality Virginia** PAC, the advocacy arm of Equality Virginia, has publicly backed the Democratic ticket for the 2013 election.
Terry McAuliffe, a Northern-Virginia business man, has been endorsed over Republican Candidate Ken Cuccinelli; a reasonable choice considering Cuccinelli’s public comments, and actions including removing employment protections for LGBT state employees, and his fight against the removal of Virginia’s sodomy law. In April of this year, McAuliffe spoke at EV’s Equality Dinner event saying “”I came out early (for marriage equality) because I thought it was the right thing to do…” Early attempts to get McAuliffe’s stance on same-sex marriage were met with a copy of a Google Chat conversation.
Since then, however McAuliffe has been less vocal in his affirmations. At a recent press conference after the Democratic Primary, McAuliffe, after saying “yes” when asked whether he supported same-sex marriage, referred further questions about LGBT issues to Senator Northam instead of answering for himself.
Several attempts by GayRVA to further the conversation about LGBT issues with candidate McAuliffe have not been granted.
Additionally, James Parrish, Executive Director of Equality Virginia, said there had been little contact between candidate McAuliffe and the state’s largest LGBT rights organization since earlier this year. “EV Advocates have been in touch with the three campaigns, but, to date, there has been no coordination.”
Senator Ralph Northam and Senator Mark Herring, running for Lt. Governor and Attorney General respectively, were both endorsed by EV PAC, and have both affirmed their stances on rights for LGBT Virginians. Northam has been the most vocal candidate on the issue. In an interview with GayRVA prior to the primary, Northam said “We need a Virginia that is welcoming and inclusive… We need to move in a forward pattern, rather than backwards.”
Parrish and EV acknowledged McAuliffe recent lack of public comment on LGBT issues, saying when faced with the choices Virginian’s have, the three democratic candidates were head and shoulders above their republican counter parts.
“You could be disappointed, or you could look at the climate of Virginia and be thankful that he’s not making the comments the other candidates are,” said Parrish. “Maybe each of the three candidates are at a different place when voicing their level of affirmation, but EV PAC felt these three will make a positive impact for LGBT Virginians.”
**Edit: Originally miss attributed endorsement to Equality Virginia, when Equality Virgina PAC was the actual group giving the endorsement
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