Ohio Senator Rob Portman's name has long been at the top of potential GOP vice-presidential picks, and the Senator seems to be getting a dry run when he joins Mitt Romney's upcoming bus tour through Ohio.
Before that, though, Portman today attended the Faith and Freedom Conference currently underway in Washington D.C. And it's there that the team from Think Progress asked Portman what he thinks about an Employment Non-Discrimination Act. His main concern? That people who are discriminated against will sue and that employers who want to discriminate will be uncomfortable.
Here's the transcript of Portman and journalist Scott Keyes' exchange:
KEYES: The Senate’s going to be taking up the Employee Non-Discrimination Act. Do you think that it ought to be illegal to fire someone for being gay in the United States?
PORTMAN: I don’t believe in discrimination…
KEYES: But whether or not it should be legal.
PORTMAN: What I’m concerned about in Paycheck Fairness and other legislation like that is the fact that it will spawn a lot of litigation the way the legislation is written. So you don’t want it to be a boon to lawyers, you want it to actually help people. But no one should discriminate.
KEYES: So you’re worried that people might actually take up claims that they were discriminated against?
PORTMAN: [...] A lot of them would create a lot of legal rights of action that would make it more difficult for employers to feel comfortable, to be able to hire, and to keep this economy moving. So you have to be careful how you do it.
Watch video AFTER THE JUMP.
Good news for Mormon LGBT people and their families. The Family Acceptance Project at San Francisco State University today released a new booklet published specifically to help Mormon youth and their parents come together for the coming out, rather than letting religious beliefs rip them asunder.
Called Supportive Families, Healthy Children: Helping Latter-day Saint Families with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Children," the 25-page booklet "blends Mormon scripture and statements on family from church presidents with research that shows family support and acceptance to be critical to the health and well-being of gay youths," says the Chicago Tribune.
The paper offers more specifics on why it's important to have a Mormon-specific guide.
Traditional marriage is deeply woven into Mormon theology, and the lines between religion and culture are blurred. Mormons also believe that families are eternal, so disassociation with family or excommunication from the church, which has occurred for some gays, can mean the loss of the promise of religious salvation, [former Mormon bishop and co-writer Robert] Rees said.
Church attitudes are shifting, however, he said. The faith now regards the origins of sexual orientation as less than fully understood and differentiates between feelings and actions when considering disciplinary action. Gay Mormons are welcome in church but only those who remain celibate can enjoy full membership.
And where's the fun in that?
You may recall that last December Republican senators blocked the confirmation of Mari Carmen Aponte, an Ambassador to El Salvador picked by Obama, because of a pro-LGBT editorial Aponte wrote in an Salvadoran newspaper in 2010.
"[Aponte's] decision to publish an opinion piece hostile to the culture of El Salvadorans presents even more doubts about her fitness for the job. This op-ed upset a large number of community and pro-life groups in El Salvador who were insulted by Ms. Aponte’s rhetoric," said Sen. Jim DeMint at the time about Aponte's op-ed, in which she insisted "homophobia and brutal hostility are often based on lack of understanding about what it truly means to be gay or transgender."
Well, the Washington Blade today reports that Aponte has finally been confirmed.
The U.S. Senate broke an impasse on Thursday to confirm a U.S. ambassador to El Salvador who had previously been denied the position in part of because of a pro-gay editorial she wrote in one of the country’s newspapers.
The Senate confirmed Mara Carmen Aponte, a D.C. lawyer and activist, to the role by voice vote after senators voted 62-37 to cut off debate on her nomination.
All Senate Democrats voted “yes” on cloture for her nomination. Republicans who joined them were Sens. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Scott Brown (R-Mass.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine).
Sen. Harry Reid applauded the decision, saying, "During her recess appointment, Ambassador Aponte was an outspoken advocate for American values and democracy, and a staunch supporter of U.S. private enterprise." The Blade also reports that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton personally called senators and urged them to back the confirmation.
PULLED: The anti-trans Cake Boss scene TLC rightfully yanked.
REMATCH: Conservative Paul Cameron sits down again with progressive radio host David Pakman.
'Doing Fine?': New Romney ad mirrors an 2008 Obama ad to slam the president.
'TAKE A WALK': Video for Passion Pit's latest track.
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Anti-gay crusader Bryan Fischer is angry with the New Yorker and journalist Jane Mayer for their pay-walled profile on him. Philistine.
The Department of Defense finally has some gay pride. "Now that we've repealed 'don't ask, don't tell,' [Defense Secretary Leon Panetta] feels it's important to find a way this month to recognize the service and professionalism of gay and lesbian troops," said a spokesman.
Matt Bomer held his own at NYC’s Most Stylish Dads Dinner last night.
Meanwhile, Bomer had this to say about manscaping down under for male stripper flick Magic Mike: "I’m not going to say it was fun, and personally I will never do it again, but for that project it was necessary. We were all in the boat together."
Some are wondering if President Obama will legalize marijuana to woo young voters. "Past attempts to bong the vote have been disappointing, in part because stoners aren't the group anyone would most count on to bother filling out a ballot... [But] several have argued that this could be the year for pro-marijuana turnout."
A Tennessee pastor claims that gay marriage-supporting singer Carrie Underwood does not understand the Bible. "What she said...has increasingly become a pretty broken understanding of what the Bible is saying. You want to listen to the Scripture in terms of what it says about everything, including marriage, including sexuality," claimed Scotty Smith, who says he has worked with the writer of Underwood's track "Jesus Take The Wheel."
HBO has apologized after it was revealed that Games of Thrones included a scene featuring George W. Bush's head on a spike.
The Georgian government has made efforts to align with international allies' pro-equality politics, but that may just further incense far-right activists in the former Soviet state. From the NY Times: "The LGBT community has found itself the subject of heated political attacks, and subsequent social reactions... New homophobic and anti-gay Georgian-language Facebook groups have also emerged, including one in which its members debate the best way to kill gay people."
Famed cyclist Lance Armstrong is again being accused of using performance enhancing drugs and says he is "considering all options" to combat the latest charges.
Chris Brown and Drake got into a bar fight over who loves Rihanna most...
President Obama speaking in Ohio today: "What's holding us back is a stalemate in Washington between two fundamentally different views of which direction America should take. And this election is your chance to break that stalemate. At stake is not simply a choice between two candidates or two political parties, but between two paths for our country.”
Mitt Romney was also in Ohio today, and claimed the commander-in-chief's policies are driving the nation "forward over a cliff."
Is this what Lindsay Lohan will look like in 50 years?
Did Melissa Etheridge play Pittsburgh Pride simply for the pink dollar?
Is Minka Kelly hiding her face after hooking up with Jake Gyllenhaal? Most of us would be telling the world.
Billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson is willing to give almost any amount of money to make sure Mitt Romney wins the White House.
NASA's image of the day looks like two galaxies colliding. Don't worry about potential inhabitants, though: the star systems are in fact tens of millions light years away from one another. Phew!
Posted Jun. 14,2012 at 5:31 PM EST by Andrew Belonsky in Barack Obama, Bryan Fischer, Carrie Underwood, Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Game of Thrones, Gay Marriage, Gay Pride, George W. Bush, Jake Gyllenhaal, Leon Panetta, Lindsay Lohan, Marijuana, Matt Bomer, Mitt Romney, News, NOM, Science | Permalink | Comments (14)
Remember the story Andy posted yesterday about a Craigslist ad allegedly from a parent who agreed to buy their kid a new computer if they "stopped" being gay? It was, thankfully, a hoax.
"I write horrible posts on Craigslist all over the country to see what issues make people angriest for a project I’m putting together. I’m sorry anyone that was offended," the prankster told Talk About Equality.