Gay-Lovin’ Skeletons in Romney’s Closet

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Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney has been the very picture of paranoid homophobia in the last few years, becoming an almost-comic figure when he filed a bogus law suit last month in an attempt to force an anti-marriage amendment onto the 2008 ballot in Massachusetts. This from a man who opposes “activist judges” and favors tort reform. Coincidentally (or not), most pundits expect Romney to be a presidential candidate on the ballot in 2008.

But, according to the Boston Globe, Romney sang a different tune in a recently re-released 1994 interview with Bay Windows, Boston’s gay paper. Romney said that the gay-lesbian community “needs more support from the Republican Party.” Romney advocated letting states decide whether to allow same-sex marriage. “People of integrity don’t force their beliefs on others, they make sure that others can live by different beliefs they may have,” Romney said. (Note to Bay Windows: SNAP on the re-release, but lose the cutesy name!)

Golly Gee, it turns out that Mitt Romney, like so many other Republicans, has been cynically gay-baiting all these years in hopes of earning kudos and votes from the religious crazies who actually think gay marriage is a pressing issue. (In reality, only about 8,000 same-sex couples have married in Massachusetts. Not only has the sky not fallen, but support for gay marriage has increased statewide.) Well, either Romney has been exaggerating his anti-gay feelings as governor of Massachusetts or he disingenuously downplayed them as a candidate, in efforts to woo gay votes away from his opponent, the notorious liberal Edward Kennedy.

So, did he lie then, or is he lying now? Frankly, I don’t give a damn. Romney won’t win in 2008, thanks, in a stroke of poetic justice, to prejudice. In this case, against him. A recent Gallup Poll says Americans aren’t ready for a Mormon president. See how hating doesn’t pay?

— Cameron Scott

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FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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