Gay Lawmakers Disappear Before Our Very Eyes!

Break out the ass-less leather pants. The look might not go well with covered wagons and prairie skirts, but the crowds and entry numbers in Salt Lake's Pride Parade are right up there with the Days of ’47. Clearly–if counter intuitively–the gay community is a strong and thriving one in the Beehive. Just two years ago, it looked like the Lege might actually emerge from the 1950s, with three gay members serving.  But, one by one, they've given up their work at the Capitol.

State Sen. Scott McCoy resigned his seat to focus on his law practice. Then, Rep. Christine Johnson left office a few months before giving birth as a surrogate mother for two gay friends. And, after 12 years of banging her head against the wall, Jackie Biskupski moved into a house outside her district with her adopted son. Is this because of a constituency that helped defeat California's pro-gay marriage proposition or the Eagle Forum's goal of “thwarting the passage of hate crime legislation,” not to mention all the kindhearted “pig sex” comments flying around? 

But the suspense isn’t over yet. Brian Doughty, openly gay and a former Equality Utah board member, replaced Biskupski in the Liberty Park district. But in the state redistricting deal, Democrats agreed to allow the district to be collapsed, which will put freshman Doughty up against fellow Dem and Minority Leader David Litvack, forcing a battle between two non-GOPers. Doughty says he will decide whether to challenge Litvack during the 2011 session. It seems likely that faster than a magician can say, “Tah-DAH!,” there will be zero gay representatives on Utah’s Capitol Hill. That's right. Orientation without representation.

 

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