They sold us out, lined their pockets, broke the laws of man and nature. Now, that same Washington gang is fighting to protect Mark Souder who says he's proud of their vicious attacks on Tom Hayhurst. Our congressman . . . Proud of distorting the facts? Proud of twisting the truth? If Mark Souder believes these are Hoosier values, he's definitely been in Washington too long. I'm Dr. Tom Hayhurst, and I approved this message.
In case Dr. Hayhurst isn't familiar with the Supreme Court's ruling in Lawrence v. Texas striking down sodomy laws, it says that private, consensual sex between adults of the same or opposite sex is legal. By perpetuating the religious right's argument that same-sex relationships are against the "laws of man and nature," he isn't only advancing bigotry towards gays and lesbians. In case Hayhurst hasn't noticed it, the Democratic candidate for Sheriff in Allen County, Tina Taviano, is an openly lesbian woman. She has been endorsed by the Victory Fund, a gay rights political action group. Taviano's Republican opponent, Ken Fries, has been very careful not to make her sexual orientation an issue in this year's race. It's too bad that Hayhurst, a prominent Fort Wayne city councilman and community leader, thinks it should be an issue.
The attempt by the ad itself to connect Souder to the persons named is tenuous at best. Souder has long earned a reputation for being independent within the House Republican caucus. The ad implies that Souder endorsed the acts of these other men because he has accepted financial support from the National Republican Congressional Committee and other Republican leaders. Although Hayhurst has outspent Souder considerably in this campaign, dipping into his own pocket, a new poll released by the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel poll shows Souder ahead by 12 points. According to the new poll of 400 likely voters, Souder leads Hayhurst by a 52%-40% margin. With less than a week left in the election, those numbers don't appear to portend any upset in the making.
Gay rights advocates have been blasting Republicans for making gay marriage a divisive wedge issue in this and recent elections. Let's see how quick they are to condemn a liberal Democrat like Tom Hayhurst for playing off people's prejudices against gays and lesbians. I wouldn't hold my breath. A big hat tip to Fort Wayne Observed's Mitch Harper for bringing the Hayhurst ad and the new poll numbers to AI's attention.