NY LGBT rights leader calls for end of Clinton support

According to an article published by 365gay.com News, an LGBT rights leader is calling for the end of support for Senator Hillary Clinton’s re-election campaign because she refuses to support full marriage equality for LGBT citizens.

Alan Van Capelle, executive director of the New York City based organization Pride Agenda, made the call to end Clinton support in a private memo to the group’s Board members. The article notes that the memo was obtained by a political blog in New York, the Politicker. Pride Agenda confirmed the memo’s existence but refused to give any comment on the issue.

According to the article:

Van Capelle’s memo calls the New York senator “a complete disappointment.” It cites her support for the Defense of Marriage Act, although she opposes a federal amendment to ban same-sex marriage and has said she supports civil unions.

New York gay Democrats are reportedly contributing heavily to Clinton’s war chest as she mulls a potential White House run in 2008.

Next month New York City Council speaker Christine C. Quinn, the first out lesbian to occupy the post, will be among the guests at a New York City gay-organized fundraising event for Clinton.

Van Capelle said in his memo to board members that he refuses to help sell tickets or endorse any Clinton fund-raiser sponsored by gay groups because her re-election would actually hurt the gay and lesbian community.

“It will send a message to other elected officials that you can be working against us during this critical time and not suffer a negative pushback from the gay community,” his memo said.Â

“We have become a community that throws money at politicians, and we demand nothing in return. And that’s what we get: nothing. It’s the wrong message to send.”

The Senator’s staff disputes Van Capelle’s position, saying she has always been a strong supporter of LGBT rights.


In an earlier post on the issue of pro-gay vs. anti-gay politicians and the positions of the Democratic Party (“The Democratic Party and LGBT Equality“)Â I discussed how politics is nothing but a big game and that to be successful one must play that game and follow the rules.

There is no doubt in my mind that Senator Clinton would support LGBT marriage equality if she could but we all know that in our current political climate she could not risk taking such a stand and “losing the game”, so to speak.

Kerry and Edwards did the same… they had to play the game and all Democrats will continue to do that. Although the Democrats aren’t in support of full marriage equality, most in the Party are supportive of at least some type of measure which would bring LGBT Americans one step closer to full equality.

Although it would be nice if Senator Clinton and other politicians supported full equality, we must realize that the current political climate (i.e. “game”) does not allow them to do so. If they were to take such drastic steps toward equality, a long, hard and painful political death would surely follow. If anything, Senator Clinton should be commended for being a smart politician, even though it is somewhat sad that a person would not speak out on an issue in which they really do believe. But, honestly, can you really blame her for doing whatever she can to get re-elected? I know I would have to do things along these lines if I were running for Senate or any other political office for that matter. We should support Clinton and other Democrats like her. Truthfully… we have no other realistic and practical choice if we want allies in the Senate and House.

Again, folks, it is a game; do not expect politicians to not play it.

Here is part of the original blog post on this issue from the Politcker:

In an email to his board members obtained by The Politicker, the head of New York State’s leading gay rights group describes Hillary Clinton as a “disappointment” on same-sex marraige, and suggests gays and lesbians stop giving money to her campaign.

In the February 10 email, marked “confidential,” Alan Van Capelle, executive director of the influential, well-funded Empire State Pride Agenda, says he’s refusing to “lend my name and sell tickets” to a gay-oriented fundraiser for Hillary’s reelection.

“Let me begin by stating that I believe Hillary Clinton has served the people of New York well in the United States Senate and that she deserves re-election,” he writes. “My vote for Senator Clinton will come despite her regrettable statements on the issue of marriage for same-sex couples and her current support for DOMA.”

She is, he writes “a complete disappointment and does not deserve an LGBT fundraiser.”

Reached this afternoon, Van Capelle confirmed that he’d sent the email but declined to elaborate on it.

Click here to continue reading the original blog post

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3 Responses to “NY LGBT rights leader calls for end of Clinton support”
  1. Joe Killian says:

    Like I needed another reason not to like Hillary Clinton…

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] A while ago I posted about an email written by NY Pride Agenda Executive Director Alan Van Capelle bashing Senator Clinton and her non-support of marriage equality. […]

  2. […] In relation to two earlier posts (”NY LGBT rights leader calls for end of Clinton support” and “Senator Clinton can dance… can you?”), I found this column written by Alan Van Capelle, Executive Director of the New York Pride Agenda and the one responsible for finally causing the LGBT community to question its “leaders” instead of blindly following and, most importantly, donating our cash. […]

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