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Wednesday, September 28, 2005

CA-26: Gay Republican Leader David Dreier

Posted by Bob Brigham

The accession of David Dreier as GOP Leader could fracture the GOP and cost Dreier his seat. The potential for Dreier to suffer the same fate as Bob Livingston is very real.

The first major problem for Dreier is the fact that the press is covering the reports Dreier is a closetted gay man:

My latest L.A. Weekly article, THE OUTING: DAVID DREIER AND HIS STRAIGHT HYPOCRISY, has only been out on the Weekly's website for a little while, but it is already causing quite a stir. I've already been interviewed live on-air by four L.A. radio stations that broadcast into Congressman Dreier's Los Angeles County district, one of the daily newspapers in his district has been in touch with me requesting information (this is a story they wouldn't touch up until now)--and, I hear, ABC News is on the story and looking for people in Dreier's district who will go on-camera and say he's gay.

I have not the slightest doubt that the outing campaign initiated by Mike Rogers' blogactive.com and supported by Raw Story's reporting is accurate in exposing Dreier. I first heard that Dreier was gay back when he first came to Congress over two decades ago and I was Washington correspondent for New York Magazine--in those days, Dreier was much more active on the gay social scene than he was later as he mounted the Republican food chain. Moreover, in the course of reporting this story, I talked to a gay Member of Congress who has observed Dreier in gay behavior and is 100% "sure," as this member told me, that Dreier is gay. And, clearly, Dreier's demagogic political homophobia justifies reporting the outing campaign targeting him.

Right now, the Christian Right looks like it has zero power in the Republican Party. I would not expect this trend to continue for long.

The other fault line that opens up by Dreier having a prominent role in the GOP is immigration. In his last election, Dreier was targeted by a Fire Dreier campaign that used radio to organize protests and has already purchased the following domains:


In 2004, Dreier outspent his opponent 50 to 1 yet received the lowest percentage of the vote during any of his elections since 1980. Dreier's district is surrounded by Democratic areas and has a significant immigrant population that could easily shift in 2006.

Right now, Dreier needs to shore up his flank, but getting today's Republicans to rally around a gay guy who is soft on immigration presents challenges that I doubt Dreier can overcome. With DeLay gone, internal GOP politics are going to get nasty. Via MyDD an important quote from Off Center

In American politics, centrifugal tendencies are everywhere. Asked to contemplate a House of Representatives without the leadership of the great coordinator, Tom DeLay, a Republican strategist with close ties to the White House commented: "It would be complete and total chaos. The House would descend into 'Lord of the Flies.'" (p. 137)

Now throw in the fact that most of GOP leadership is looking at jail time:

Washington, DC - Today, a Texas grand jury returned a criminal indictment against House GOP Leader Tom DeLay on a charge of conspiracy. Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean issued the following statement, saying DeLay's indictment is symptomatic of the Republicans' culture of corruption in Washington, DC:

"Today, the state of Texas is doing what the Republican-controlled federal government has failed repeatedly to do, which is hold Republicans in Washington accountable for their culture of corruption. This alleged illegal activity reaches to the highest levels of the Republican Party.

"With House Republican Leader Tom DeLay under criminal indictment, Senate Republican Leader Frist facing SEC and Department of Justice investigations, and White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove under investigation, the Republican leadership in Washington is now spending more time answering questions about ethical misconduct than doing the people's business."

“Tom DeLay is neither the beginning nor the end of the Washington Republicans' ethical problems. America can do better than leaders who use their power to promote their own personal interests instead of the interests of the American people who elected them. We simply must change the way business is done in Washington."

The GOP is totally FUBAR and Democrats are Fighting.

Posted at 03:09 PM in 2006 Elections - House, California, Culture of Corruption, Republicans, Scandals | Technorati

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