Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bill's Gay Gaffe

Choice Words
By Nate Dinsdale

Published: August 15, 2007

Do you think homosexuality is a choice, or is it biological?-Melissa Etheridge to Gov. Bill Richardson at the Aug. 9 "Visible Vote '08" presidential forum focused on LGBT issues.

"It's a choice. -Bill Richardson, responding to Etheridge.

"Presidential candidate Bill Richardson, plung[ed] last night's Democratic gay and lesbian forum deep into Ricky Gervais-style awkwardness. For someone who brags about his experience, Richardson keeps acting like he's not ready for prime time.-Michael Crowley on The New Republic's "The Plank" blog, Aug. 10.
"Throughout his 15 minutes on camera, Richardson tried again and again to return the conversation to his very strong record of actual achievements in gay rights, but the "˜choice' and "˜maricon' gaffes only underline how easily he and voters have been distracted from his impressive resume"”on this and so many other issues. It's the central conundrum of his candidacy.- Chris Crain on his "Citizen Crain" blog, Aug. 10.
"I just simply made a mistake. I misunderstood the question"¦I thought it was a tricky science question, where you put politics into science. I think the word Melissa used was "˜biological'. Since I use "˜choice' so much, I'm so committed to choice"”a woman's right to choose"”I thought that was the appropriate answer"¦Also, I had flown all night from New Hampshire. I was a little tired, but there's no excuse. I made a mistake. I think my record stands for itself.- Bill Richardson, in an interview with, Aug. 10.
"I regret Gov. Richardson's mis-statement"”as I sometimes regret one or two of my own"”but his error in the pressure of a debate should not detract from his very strong record in defense of equality for all Americans, including those of us who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender."- Openly gay US Rep. Barney Frank, D-MA, in an Aug. 13 statement.
"[Richardson's] rationale and his initial answer are inexcusable. To gays and lesbians, flubbing the choice vs. nature question is like botching the answer to "˜What's one plus one?' Note to Richardson's current and former gay staffers and supporters: Do an intervention"”and get him an Ambien"”before he implodes again.- Jonathan Capehart, Washington Post column, Aug. 13.

Here's some funny Comedy Central video on that forum.

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