Critics of 2 Colo. Legislators’ Anti-Civil Union Votes Note Their Gay Sons
Two Republican Colorado representatives say they will vote against a civil unions bill even though they both have a gay son, New York Daily News reported.
Rep. Marsha Looper, 53, a GOP incumbent in the Colorado legislature, was upset and surprised when the public learned that her son is gay. The lawmaker can thank her campaign for the information leak, as someone on her team forwarded an email to supporters that mentioned her son’s sexuality.
"God is truly to be praised for Marsha Looper because she also has a homosexual son," the email said.
The legislator claims she does not know who wrote the original email but did admit that her campaign manager was responsible for forwarding it.
"I’m very, very disappointed," Looper said in regards to the email. "These are very intimate issues. I love my son. I always will. He has said, ’Mom, I want my privacy.’"
The article notes that Looper has never "explicitly kept her son’s sexual orientation a secret and has reportedly answered about it honestly when asked."
Looper voted against the civil unions bill in committee last month but it died on the House floor.
"I am disappointed that my campaign manager forwarded an e-mail that would include any member of my family in policy discussions," Looper said in a statement. "My opinions, financials and policies are appropriate discussions for the campaign, however my family members’ personal lives are not a legitimate avenue for my campaign, or any other campaign to discuss."
Looper’s situation mirrors that of Republican Colorado Rep. Don Coram, who also says he’ll vote down the civil unions bill despite having a gay son.
"I am the very proud father of one son, who happens to be gay," Coarm said last month before the he voted "no."
After the law died, the representative’s son, Dee Coram, received a substantial amount media attention. He told Colorado’s NBC 9News that if the bill got to the House floor his father would vote against it but that he did support the bill moving to the floor.
Rep. Don Coram said in an interview that he is against gay marriage and is more likely to support civil unions. He went on to say that he interpreted the bill as legalizing marriage because it used the word "spouse."
"I wouldn’t have had a problem with this, not at all, if this bill didn’t use the word ’spouse,’" he said. "I’ve asked the questions many times in my district: Do you support civil unions? The answer is yes. Then I ask if they support gay marriage. The answer is overwhelmingly no. This was a same-sex-marriage bill."
Back during the 2004 presidential election Dick and Lynne Cheney, who did not support marriage equality at the time, said they were outraged that John Kerry mentioned that their daughter Mary is a lesbian, Slate points out.
After the debate, Lynne called it a "cheap and tawdry political trick" but the vice president did not comment on the subject.
"That suggests to me that Cheney wasn’t outraged at all. (When John Edwards had mentioned Mary in the much nastier vice presidential debate, Cheney had thanked him ’for the kind words he said about my family and our daughter.’)," Slate writer Timothy Noah wrote.
The next morning the New York Times reported that three undecided Iowan voters said it was "unfair" that Kerry used Cheney’s daughter’s sexual orientation in the debate. That afternoon, Cheney then said he was a "pretty angry father" and said that it proved Kerry would "say and do anything in order to get elected."