Rep. Harold Ford, Jr. (D-TN) thought he'd do some fundraising in San Francisco. But that was before word got out that Ford is one of only 36 Democrats in Congress who voted for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
The conservative Democrat has been holding fundraisers around the country for his 2006 bid for Bill Frist's senate seat.
After Mayor Gavin Newsom heard the news, the famed same-sex marriage champion backed out of the scheduled fundraiser and urged Ford to cancel the event.
“A vote for discrimination is not something the Mayor can stand for,” said Jennifer Petrucione, a spokeswoman for Newsom. “Discrimination, whether based on race, sexual orientation or gender, is unacceptable.”
Petrucione said the mayor would like to talk with Ford about his positions on “civil rights” before considering whether to endorse him. Ford’s campaign did not return a call for comment, but he told the Commercial Appeal newspaper in Memphis he canceled the event after prompting from San Francisco politicians.
“It came to my attention that there were a few people in San Francisco concerned about my opposition to gay marriages,” Ford was quoted as saying. “Out of concern for local politicians, we decided to push the event back to mid-January.”
Harold Ford is dreaming if he thinks he's going to get money out of San Francisco. The only thing the conservative 'Democrat' has going for him is that he's better than Billy Frist. Obviously that's not saying a whole lot.
As one San Francisco Democrat noted, "Congressman Ford supported President Bush's attempt to privatize Social Security .. and he supported readopting the Patriot Act, which allows the torture of individuals by U.S. operatives in foreign prisons."
Geoff Kors of Equality California said, "Discrimination is never acceptable and you cannot reward people who support discrimination."
Ford’s vote for the Marriage Protection Act helped earn him a dismal score of 44 out of 100 points from the Human Rights Campaign.
Harold Ford also voted in favor of school prayer (2001). The Democrat has a 30% rating from NARAL, indicating a decidedly pro-life voting record.
For more on Ford's voting record, see On the Issues.
Hat tip to Americablog (check out the discussion)
Update: While Ford was once a strong supporter of Bush's Social Security privatization scheme, he eventually changed his position, but only after considerable publicity and pressure. (This was covered extensively at Talking Points Memo.) Ford voted against the reauthorization of the Patriot Act (and for the original Patriot Act). I'm not certain if he originally supported reauthorization, as the passage quoted above in this post suggests.
Thanks to one of the commenters for the reminder. Ford voted with the Republicans for the horrendous Bankruptcy Bill. Bill Clinton repeatedly vetoed variations of the Republican Bankruptcy Bill.
When your minimum monthly payments increase, or double, come the new year, be sure to send Harold Ford a thank you note at:
Harold Ford Same-sex Marriage Gay Politics Civil Rights San Francisco Homophobia Tennessee Democrats 2006