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HRC to Romney: Ditch Anti-LGBT Finance Chair

HRC to Romney: Ditch Anti-LGBT Finance Chair

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The Human Rights Campaign and supporters are calling on Mitt Romney to fire his national finance chair, Frank VanderSloot, who has a record of antigay activities.

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The Human Rights Campaign and supporters are calling on Mitt Romney to fire his national finance chair, Frank VanderSloot, who has a record of antigay activities.

HRC launched an online action Thursday night, with a letter for individuals to sign and send to Romney, the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, and more than 15,000 people have already done so, officials with the group said.

VanderSloot, a wealthy Idaho businessman, has an antigay history that includes a billboard campaign condemning Idaho Public Television for showing the award-winning documentary It's Elementary: Talking About Gay Issues in School. The billboards claimed the film promoted "the homosexual lifestyle," and according to a Salon profile by Glenn Greenwald, VanderSloot said of the documentary, "If this isn't stopped, a lot of little kids will watch this program and create questions they've never had ... little lives are going to be damaged permanently."

Greenwald also reported that VanderSloot has often threatened journalists who write about him and outed a gay one, and that in 2008 his wife, Belinda, donated $100,000 in support of Proposition 8, the ballot measure that rescinded marriage equality in California.

HRC spokesman Fred Sainz said Romney's relationship with VanderSloot "speaks volumes about how Mitt Romney truly feels about LGBT people." He urged Romney to "immediately fire VanderSloot and return the money he's donated to the campaign" and added that the candidate "can no longer get away with saying he opposes discrimination against LGBT Americans while simultaneously working with someone as viciously anti-LGBT as Frank VanderSloot."

For HRC's letter, click here.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.