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Author Topic: Earliest time for a gay president?  (Read 7564 times)
Horus
Sheliak5
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« on: January 08, 2009, 01:24:11 am »
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Yeah, I know, copycat thread, but this intrigues me a lot because we clearly AREN'T ready yet... not even close to ready. I'd venture a guess at around 2030? But even that's optimistic...
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LanceMcSteel
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2009, 01:28:55 am »
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2000, Bush was the first homosexual president.
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memphis
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2009, 02:22:00 am »
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not in the foreseeable future
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2009, 02:42:58 am »
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Depends on how outward the homosexuality is.

And how terrible the economy is at the time.
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2009, 02:44:54 am »
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2084
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« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2009, 03:17:44 am »
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1857.
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« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2009, 03:59:51 am »
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2084

A gay Republican, at least... we're realistic.
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« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2009, 04:09:05 am »
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2028
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« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2009, 04:49:58 am »
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2024.  All it would take is our generation coming into the dominant voting bloc, and that will happen within twenty years.
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ShadowOfTheWave
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« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2009, 05:28:38 am »
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But doesn't the next generation always try to get away from what the other one was? Such as making this generations children more conservative?
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« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2009, 05:36:53 am »
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But doesn't the next generation always try to get away from what the other one was? Such as making this generations children more conservative?

Err, no. We're talking about 'my' generation - people roughly between the ages of fourteen and twenty-four - not the toddlers and grade schoolers of today. And 'my' generation is unusually tolerant of divergent lifestyles, though we tend to be a little on the conservative side economically. If what you say is true, the people coming after me will be slightly more conservative socially, but economically liberal. As it stands, though, things will never go back to the way they were in the 1980s, hallelujah.
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« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2009, 08:42:08 am »
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2024.  All it would take is our generation coming into the dominant voting bloc, and that will happen within twenty years.

I agree with Don on this. 2024 may be a bit early, but not too early. The age gap on homosexuality is enormous--and not surprising. The youngest voters today grew up essentially being familiar with homosexuality. Often with some vicious common stereotypes thrown in, but generally speaking portrayed neutrally. Whereas the oldest generation grew up when homosexuality was still illegal and considered a mental illness.

Does that make a difference; of course, it makes an enormous difference. Support for gay marriage, a good barometer, is around 65% among those 18-29, but below 30% among those 65+. By, say, 2029, the vast majority of those 65+ will be deceased, while another twenty years of new voters with support for gay marriage equal or greater to that of the 18-25 group will enter the voting pool.

The traditional view is that people get more conservative as they get older. This is a hopeless generalization and usually supported, not by tracking individual generations, but by looking at a snapshot and observing that older voters are more conservative. The abortion issue is a good counter to this. The least supportive of abortion group is the 30-44 age group. Those also happen to be the ones who came of age during Reagan's presidency or immediately prior or thereafter. The most supportive group varies, but is most often the 45-64 age group--who came of age during the rise of the feminist movement and the handing down of Roe v Wade.

Generations' social views are largely shaped by their environment in their pre-voting and early voting years, not by rabid liberalism in youth and radical conservatism in senescence, although, given the rate at which society changes, they may appear radically conservative by the time they reach age 65. Abortion is a good barometer for these sorts of things because overall views on the issue have remained very steady for decades; overall views on homosexuality have not.


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« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2009, 08:55:16 am »
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2024.  All it would take is our generation coming into the dominant voting bloc, and that will happen within twenty years.

I agree with Don on this. 2024 may be a bit early, but not too early. The age gap on homosexuality is enormous--and not surprising. The youngest voters today grew up essentially being familiar with homosexuality. Often with some vicious common stereotypes thrown in, but generally speaking portrayed neutrally. Whereas the oldest generation grew up when homosexuality was still illegal and considered a mental illness.

Does that make a difference; of course, it makes an enormous difference. Support for gay marriage, a good barometer, is around 65% among those 18-29, but below 30% among those 65+. By, say, 2029, the vast majority of those 65+ will be deceased, while another twenty years of new voters with support for gay marriage equal or greater to that of the 18-25 group will enter the voting pool.

The traditional view is that people get more conservative as they get older. This is a hopeless generalization and usually supported, not by tracking individual generations, but by looking at a snapshot and observing that older voters are more conservative. The abortion issue is a good counter to this. The least supportive of abortion group is the 30-44 age group. Those also happen to be the ones who came of age during Reagan's presidency or immediately prior or thereafter. The most supportive group varies, but is most often the 45-64 age group--who came of age during the rise of the feminist movement and the handing down of Roe v Wade.

Generations' social views are largely shaped by their environment in their pre-voting and early voting years, not by rabid liberalism in youth and radical conservatism in senescence, although, given the rate at which society changes, they may appear radically conservative by the time they reach age 65. Abortion is a good barometer for these sorts of things because overall views on the issue have remained very steady for decades; overall views on homosexuality have not.




 Good points you made there.
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« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2009, 09:09:04 am »
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There should be some way to calculate this. The first openly gay state legislators were elected in the 1970s, but they were few and far between. It took until this decade to get more than a handful, but interestingly, in the last few years we've elected out representatives all over the country, including the most conservative states. It's almost always in liberal districts.

1998, I think, was the first election in which an openly gay person was elected to an open seat in Congress. It took ten years, 2008, for a follow-up. Both were in relatively liberal districts, a caveat I have to include because Tammy Baldwin, amazingly, succeeded a Republican. CO-2 is pretty damn liberal.

We seem far from electing an openly gay senator or governor. It could happen within the next 10 years, but I wouldn't put better than even money on it. Running statewide is a high hurdle. We don't even have people elected to low-visibility executive offices yet, as we've had with African Americans in the South for a while. I don't know who could do it as a viable candidate. Now is the time to identify these future senators and governors. Jarrett Barrios had an opportunity in Massachusetts, but he got stopped for other reasons at Middlesex County D.A. and retired from politics. Christine Quinn? Tough to move from N.Y. city office to Albany. Someone in California?

A future President can't be discussed until we've gotten some people elected statewide. To me, 2024 sounds too early. After all, women senators lagged far behind majority acceptance of equality in the workplace, and a woman president lags far behind that. So I would expect a gay president to also lag behind equality in the workplace and socially, and even that is a ways off in many parts of the country.

To make this long story short, there are too many intermediate steps we have yet to reach before we can contemplate an openly gay President. Generational turnover in the electorate is only a small part of it.
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« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2009, 09:46:42 am »
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I don't see why it couldn't be 2012. Probably not, but it could happen. It would more likely be a Dem nomination than GOP. If faced with Palin vs. some gay guy are the indys really going to sit it out or vote Palin...because the Dem is gay? We'll assume Obama dies or something to set this up.
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« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2009, 10:06:03 am »
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 How about the first athiest President?
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« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2009, 10:42:18 am »
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I don't see why it couldn't be 2012. Probably not, but it could happen. It would more likely be a Dem nomination than GOP. If faced with Palin vs. some gay guy are the indys really going to sit it out or vote Palin...because the Dem is gay? We'll assume Obama dies or something to set this up.

There is no gay candidate with the stature to run for President and there is no way in hell either Democratic fundraisers, interest groups, or voters would take a chance on a gay candidate who they'd expect to lose big.
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« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2009, 11:51:50 am »
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There is no gay candidate with the stature to run for President

That you know of. S/he could come out.

and there is no way in hell either Democratic fundraisers, interest groups, or voters would take a chance on a gay candidate who they'd expect to lose big.

Didn't most people expect Obama to lose all of '07?
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« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2009, 11:58:03 am »
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and there is no way in hell either Democratic fundraisers, interest groups, or voters would take a chance on a gay candidate who they'd expect to lose big.

Didn't most people expect Obama to lose all of '07?

Yes, and it's a testament to his quality as a candidate and his campaign's effectiveness that he overcame it. Tough to do. Barney Frank can't.
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« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2009, 12:25:58 pm »
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But we're not talking about Barney Frank. If we construct our candidate by taking Obama and make him white and then make him gay him and then put him up against Palin, he couldn't win? I think he could. We'll even assume there is no live in partner to make it easier.
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« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2009, 12:43:44 pm »
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2028
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brittain33
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« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2009, 01:02:51 pm »
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But we're not talking about Barney Frank. If we construct our candidate by taking Obama and make him white and then make him gay him and then put him up against Palin, he couldn't win? I think he could. We'll even assume there is no live in partner to make it easier.

Even granting that the Republicans put up a bad candidate like Palin--then there's no way a gay nominee would make it out of the primary. Too many qualified straight candidates would run and Democratic voters, including most gay ones, wouldn't consider a gay nominee a viable choice. The same way many African American voters were reluctant to support Obama early. We could say, ok, Jared Polis defeats Sarah Palin, but part of the challenge is identifying how we would ever arrive at that kind of match-up. (It's sad that I'm not sure he could, even.) We really can't reduce this to our guess about the willingness of the electorate to vote for a gay candidate. The development of a candidate is part of the process and a big part of the reason it will take longer than people think. It's why we couldn't make the leap to women Presidential candidates before we had a sizable number of women governors and senators.

I actually think having a partner would help as opposed to hurt. It negates the issue of thinking about the person's sex life by making the homosexuality be about his relationship and not about his potential dating life. Also, I think it's more likely to be a she, but that's neither here nor there.
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« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2009, 01:11:13 pm »
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1860 they say...
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« Reply #23 on: January 08, 2009, 01:25:17 pm »
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There should be some way to calculate this. The first openly gay state legislators were elected in the 1970s, but they were few and far between. It took until this decade to get more than a handful, but interestingly, in the last few years we've elected out representatives all over the country, including the most conservative states. It's almost always in liberal districts.

1998, I think, was the first election in which an openly gay person was elected to an open seat in Congress. It took ten years, 2008, for a follow-up. Both were in relatively liberal districts, a caveat I have to include because Tammy Baldwin, amazingly, succeeded a Republican. CO-2 is pretty damn liberal.

We seem far from electing an openly gay senator or governor. It could happen within the next 10 years, but I wouldn't put better than even money on it. Running statewide is a high hurdle. We don't even have people elected to low-visibility executive offices yet, as we've had with African Americans in the South for a while. I don't know who could do it as a viable candidate. Now is the time to identify these future senators and governors. Jarrett Barrios had an opportunity in Massachusetts, but he got stopped for other reasons at Middlesex County D.A. and retired from politics. Christine Quinn? Tough to move from N.Y. city office to Albany. Someone in California?

A future President can't be discussed until we've gotten some people elected statewide. To me, 2024 sounds too early. After all, women senators lagged far behind majority acceptance of equality in the workplace, and a woman president lags far behind that. So I would expect a gay president to also lag behind equality in the workplace and socially, and even that is a ways off in many parts of the country.

To make this long story short, there are too many intermediate steps we have yet to reach before we can contemplate an openly gay President. Generational turnover in the electorate is only a small part of it.

All true. Although I do point to Cicciline as a very likely elected gay governor in 2010. Rhode Island may not count as a state for this purpose, however Wink
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« Reply #24 on: January 08, 2009, 01:32:33 pm »
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I agree with Verily. Just look at acceptance of interracial marriage over time for another example.
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