Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Virginia governor's race debate on NBC4 spurs exchange on gay inequality in the Old Dominion

Chuck Todd of NBC Washington (NBC4) moderated a debate this evening between Virginia gubernatorial candidates Terry McAullife (D) and Ken Cucinelli (R, now the state attorney general). NBC4’s link is here. It was carried on NBC4 in the DC area from 7-8 PM EDT tonight, which pushed up NBC Nightly News by a half hour.  
 It was held at the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce.   
The candidates were questioned on gay marriage.  McAuliffe said that if gay men and women could share the risks of combat in the military, they should have all other equal rights at home (an idea which I think drove the “dadt” debate for seventeen years).  He said he would sign any anti-discrimination bill or gay partners bill that came before him.  Cucinelli quickly referred to the 2006 amendment (Marshall-Newman) which would prevent gay marriage from every been approved in Virginia, unless the Commonwealth overturned the amendment first.  He said that as attorney general he was obliged to defend Virginia law and the constitution.
But  McAuliffe also pointed out that Cucinelli had one referred to LGBT people as  "self-destructive" and “soulless” (almost echoing Vlidimir Putin), which Cucinelli denied.  The comments would seem to be motivated by ideas about HIV and about supposed indifference to the potential responsibilities of procreation.  McAufllife said that Cucinelli’s anti-gay reputation almost prevent Northrup_Gruman from moving 300 jobs to Fairfax County.   
The debate did not get into Cucinelli’s supposed attacks on abortion, or on McAuliffe’s rumored misadventures with a company of his that went under in 2002, or about his forays in the electric car business.

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