Georgia primary voters sent home one of the most outspoken antigay members of Congress on Tuesday, choosing Republican representative John Linder over Bob Barr by a nearly 2-to-1 margin.
With 95% of precincts reporting, Linder had 52,229 votes, or 66%, to Barr's 26,735, or 34%. The campaign, which had often been contentious, ended with Barr's appearing at Linder's victory celebration. "We're just here this evening to congratulate John Linder for having run a very good race," Barr said. "We go into the fall race very much a united party."
Barr has long been public enemy number 1 among Georgia Democrats and supporters of gay rights. He was a sponsor of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage under federal law as a union between a man and a woman.
Another of Barr's favorite targets was President Clinton. He was the first lawmaker to call for Clinton's resignation over the Monica Lewinski scandal and was one of the House prosecutors who made the case that the Senate should expel the president.