Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Saturday, September 18, 2004

More minority news

Here's a little tidbit that the mainstream media is probably not reporting too much. The Log Cabin Republicans, a prominent group of gay Republicans, have declined to endorse President Bush for the upcoming election. This is hardly a surprise. Most gay Republicans are "economically Republican", i.e. social moderates/liberals who vote Republican because they believe in low taxes and small, fiscally responsible government. Bush has lost these voters because of his ultra-right wing social policies and his deficit spending.

What surprises me a little here is their non-endorsement of Kerry, whom they accuse of waffling on gay rights. (If you're curious, his views on gay rights can be found here) In any case, Kerry, a fiscal conservative and a social moderate, will probably get a lot of these votes anyway. The others will likely just stay home (or vote Nader). This is another minority that might play an important role in the November election, so stay tuned.


Gaoshan said...

So the gay republican vote will most likely go Kerry's way? What is that, like a 1,000 votes or so? I don't think I have ever met a gay person who was republican... the most conservative gay guy I know is a moderate democrat!

Oh, and you are right about the mainstream media not reporting on that. I can just see the faces of the editors at my old paper (deep in the South) if a reporter were to suggest covering the local gay republican vote! Hee, hee... talk about shock.

Bell Curve said...

You should read the article I linked to. 1,000,000 gays voted Bush in 2000, including 50,000 in Florida. Think that can't turn an election?...

Raised By Republicans said...

Actually the Log Cabin Republican leaders claim something like 2 million gay men and women voted for Bush in 2000. More importantly for Bush, Gay Republicans tend to be urban Republicans - a very rare thing these days. Losing the Log Cabin Republicans in the urban areas of the Swing States could prove fatal. There are several cities that probably have larger than expected gay communities that could be a problem for Bush. The cities that leap to my mind are Denver, Columbus, and Minneapolis. All three cities are in so called "battle ground states." All three states are either tied or close right now and represent a total of 39 electoral votes. Not to mention how many gay men and women voted for Bush in Florida (also tied) with its 27 electoral votes!

If anyone has a good source for gay population distribution and/or voting patterns let's hear about it!

Dr. Strangelove said...

In November, 2002, a Zogby International survey on gay voting patterns (commissioned by the Human Rights Campaign when the Voter News Service [VNS] decided to discontinue theirs) showed that approximately 5% of all US voters were self-identified as gay or lesbian. The earlier VNS data also shows that in the last four consecutive elections, gays have consistently represented 4 to 5 percent of the electorate. By way of comparison, the racial breakdown of voters in 2002 was: Black 10%, Hispanic 7%, Jewish 4%, and Asian 2%.

In the Zogby poll, gay voters in the 2002 congressional elections voted 71 percent Democratic, 19 percent Republican, 4.1 percent Libertarian and 2.7 percent Green. Gay voters reported that their top three priorities in picking candidates were the economy, the candidate's political ideology and taxes. This would seem to support Bell Curve's assertion that these are "economic Republicans."

So the republican 19% of the gay 5% of the voters in 2000 is about one million (openly) gay republican votes that Bush got in 2000. He's probably lost a lot of those, but the Christian Right is a much larger, off-setting voting bloc. But when you look at it state-by-state, I think one intriguing possibility crops up.

The 2000 census data on same-sex couples (not quite the same as the gay voting population, but it's an indicator) shows which states have the highest percentage of gays. The top five states won't surprise anyone and aren't really "in play" this year:

1. Washington D.C. (OK, OK, it's not a state...)
2. Vermont (gee, can you guess why?)
3. California
4. Washington
5. Massachussetts

The next five, however, with only very slightly lower percentages, are swing states:

6. Maine
7. Oregon
8. Florida
9. Nevada
10. New Mexico

In particular, I draw your attention to #9 and #10, neither being especially known for its strict moral values. These could be states where Bush's anti-gay strategy costs him. Although I have only anecdotal evidence for this, I believe it is true (and it would make sense) that the gay community in most of the nation is especially mobilized for this election--at least as much as any other sector is. But I don't expect the 5%-of-the-electorate figure to change much since I am guessing that most gay republicans may simply choose not to vote, rather than actually voting for Kerry.

By the way, about 1% of all couples in the US 2000 census (whether married or unmarried) were same-sex, and the two states with the lowest percentage of gay couples were the Dakotas, but I attribute this to a preference for decent weather :)

Raised By Republicans said...

Thanks oh great and powerful Master of Time and Space! Great info!

Dr. Strangelove said...

Thanks, RbR (may I call you RbR?) It also occurred to me that the figure of 1 million gay republican voters who chose Bush last time around (of whom Bush has presumably pissed off a fair fraction) has a natural multiplier in it. Gays and lesbians have parents, children, and siblings who may well be personally swayed by this.

I note that even the Cheney family has been moved (publicly!) to oppose Bush's stance on gay marriage for this reason. So it's no stretch of the imagination believe that this issue will induce some less stalwart Republican relatives of gays and lesbians to at least withhold their votes from Bush, if not actually vote for Kerry. If every gay person who chooses not to support Bush again takes one or two close relatives with him, that would greatly magnify the effect on the swing states.

Well, one can only hope!

The Law Talking Guy said...

The fact that any gays are Republican at all tells you more about the attractiveness of iconoclasm than anything else. Gay Republicans are like the people I bemoan who claim to be "independent" because they equate that with intellectual. Being a gay Republican is like being a black Klansman. It doesn't matter if you agree on some issues. The Republican party of today believes that homosexuality is a sin and a disease, and that homosexuals, like pedophiles, are a group of sexual deviants whose "deviance" deserves no rights. Until the public begins to wake up to how ultra-right-wing these Republicans reeally