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GOP House Takeover Doesn’t Bode Well for LGBT Progress

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Republicans have taken over control of the U.S. House of Representatives and the LGBT community has lost control over its efforts to pass pro-gay legislation for at least the next two years and maybe for much longer.

The actual numbers now mean less than the political outcome: Republicans have won enough seats in Tuesday’s mid-term elections to take control of the House in January.

After only four short years in the majority, the Democratic Party has been tossed from the drivers’ seat. Hope for consideration of any and all pro-LGBT legislation is almost certainly gone, and some say it means little likelihood of securing repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell –which passed the House this year but has been blocked in the Senate.

The Republican victories Tuesday also means goodbye to a strong ally in the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell – Rep. Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania, who championed the legislation in the House, has been defeated by his Republican challenger.

Perhaps worse is the GOP takeover of more state legislatures –25 in all— giving Republicans a significant advantage in redistricting Congressional districts and, thus, future campaigns. In New Hampshire, there’s addtional significance: Republicans there gained enough seats to override a veto should they be able to pass repeal of the state’s new marriage equality law next year.

The good news doesn’t mitigate the bad, but there was some to be found in Tuesday’s results. The U.S. House picked up its fourth openly gay member – Providence Mayor David Cicilline won his bid to represent Rhode Island’s First District. Health activist Kevin Lembo won a statewide seat –as state comptroller—in Connecticut, making him the highest ranked openly-gay state politician in the country. And in one of the biggest surprises of the evening, an out gay man, Jim Gray, has won election as mayor in Lexington, Kentucky.

-Lisa Keen, Keen News Service


Written by OutQ News staff

November 3, 2010 at 3:59 PM

One Response

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  1. With the country in its huge financial jam, created by both Democrats (Barney Frank, Chris Dodd) and Republicans (Bush), who cares that the Republicans taking the House mean less progress for LGBT issues. We have real issues to face, such as jobs creation and paying down our foreign debt. I’m sorry, but LGBT issues just don’t mean much in these tough times


    November 3, 2010 at 4:50 PM

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