Paladino’s Gay Nephew Speaks Out

By Julie Bolcer

Originally published on Advocate.com October 13 2010 8:35 AM ET

Jeff Hannon, the 23-year-old gay nephew of
Carl Paladino (he also works for the campaign), spoke out Tuesday about his uncle’s antigay
remarks, saying that he was “very offended” by the comments.

According to the New York Post, “In a brief phone interview yesterday, Hannon, in his first public remarks on the incident, told the Post, ‘Obviously, I'm very offended by his comments.’”

The Post reported that Hannon has not reported for work at the Buffalo campaign headquarters since Sunday, the day his uncle told ultra-Orthodox Jewish leaders in Brooklyn that children should not be “brainwashed” into thinking homosexuality was an “equally valid or successful option.” He also criticized his Democratic opponent, Andrew Cuomo, for taking his children to the gay pride parade.

On Monday, Paladino adviser Roger Stone told The Advocate that Paladino, a wealthy Buffalo businessman, had embraced his nephew at a time in his life when other family members struggled with his sexual orientation.

As Paladinopalooza churned through day 3 in New York on Tuesday, the Republican gubernatorial candidate was greeted by gay protesters in New Paltz and Buffalo, who demanded that he apologize for his remarks, which he did in a statement later in the day.

Meanwhile, the Associated Press reports that state records show that Paladino once collected rent from two gay clubs located in buildings he owned in downtown Buffalo. One of them, called Cobalt, operated as a gay bar from 2004 to 2005 and was run by Paladino’s son, William.