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AFER Backer Gave to Antigay Candidates

AFER Backer Gave to Antigay Candidates


With a mixed giving pattern not uncommon among the extremely wealthy, Paul Singer, the hedge fund manager who will co-host a September fund-raiser for the American Foundation for Equal Rights featuring Ken Mehlman, also shows a history of contributing to antigay elected officials, including Virginia governor Bob McDonnell and attorney general Ken Cuccinelli.

Duncan Osborne reports that "Paul Singer, the chief of Elliott Management, a multi-billion hedge fund, gave $100,000 to McDonnell, currently Virginia's governor, between April of 2009 and September of that year and $25,000 to Cuccinelli, Virginia's attorney general, in August of 2009. McDonnell and Cuccinelli are Republicans and Singer has a long history of making substantial donations to that party's state and federal organizations and candidates as well as to right wing think tanks and policy groups."

Since taking office this year, Governor McDonnell has suggested that laws protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation may be unnecessary. He issued an executive order that banned discrimination in state employment but failed to include sexual orientation.

Cuccinelli wrote to Virginia state universities this year and said that their policies should not ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

On the other hand,The New York Times reports that Singer's contributions also include more than $4 million to gay rights causes.

Singer will cohost a fund-raiser September 22 in his Manhattan home for AFER, which is spearheading the case against Proposition 8 in federal court. The event will feature Mehlman, the 2004 George W. Bush campaign manager and former Republican National Committee chairman who came out to The Atlantic last week and is now voicing support for marriage equality.

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