There’s something about Mary

For the second time, Vice President Cheney’s daughter has been brought forth as a debate issue – and for the second time, it wasn’t her father or her father’s running mate who did it.

Questions regarding same-sex marriage – or in the case of last night’s debate – the origins of homosexuality in general – certainly shouldn’t automatically revolve around any one individual, but both last night and last Tuesday the Kerry/Edwards team focused the issue on Dick Cheney’s lesbian daughter Mary. What’s the strategy?

One mention might have been innocuous – but not really that innocuous. Two mentions trips the red light: who are Kerry and Edwards speaking to when they remind the American public that Cheney has a gay daughter? Certainly not the moderates – they wouldn’t want to do anything to soften either candidate on social issues in the eyes of the swing voters. The left? No clear line of strategy there.

Who’s left? The right, actually; the President’s base. One might see the strategy as an attempt to spark a “there’s a fox in the hen house” murmuring in the right-wing, hoping to make them less likely to run to the polls on November 2. If that were the case, it would be difficult to argue that either candidate has shown unequivocal support for gay Americans in this election; Kerry and Edwards may have come close, but their hopes for a win have clouded their basic values of respect.

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