Houston’s Lesbian Mayor?

Flickr/<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/14339457@N08/4041490994/">iavorche</a> (<a href="http://www.creativecommons.org" target="_blank">Creative Commons</a>)

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


Houston’s mayoral race has come down to a notable runoff, with a final vote scheduled for this Saturday. Last month’s first round of votes in a seven-way race favored Annise Parker, a white lesbian who, if elected, would make Houston the largest U.S. city ever to have an openly gay mayor. Anti-gay activists and squeamish religious groups are mobilizing as per usual. They endorse her opponent, former city attorney Gene Locke, who won 25 percent of first round votes to Parker’s 31 percent. If he wins, he’ll become Houston’s second black mayor.

The anti-gay endorsement has put Locke in a slightly sticky position: Two of his key supporters gave money to a conservative political action committee behind a mailer condemning Parker’s “homosexual behavior.”

Naturally, a little political distancing was in order. From an AP article yesterday:

“Gene has been very clear with his supporters to not participate in divisive campaigning,” Kim Devlin, a senior Locke adviser said in a statement Tuesday. “Gene Locke has fought against bigotry his entire life and knows that there is no place for it in this campaign and this city.”

Ta-Nehisi Coates over at The Atlantic succinctly disputes claims that the mayoral runoff echoes a perceived split between black and LGBT communities during the California vote on Proposition 8 last year. Meanwhile, Brian Levin’s blog at the Huffington Post has more on the homophobic campaign tactics, with a photo of the anti-gay mailer that shows Parker taking a prior oath of office with her partner of twenty years. Above that, the mailer reads:

“IS THIS THE IMAGE HOUSTON WANTS TO PORTRAY?”

Quite possibly, yes. We’ll find out when the election results come in this weekend. It’s expected to be a close call.

 

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate