Christine Quinn is my (and our) only choice for mayor of New York.
I have not wanted to get into the on going pissing match about the New York mayoral race, but I have to speak loud and clear.
It seems like it's been so easy for critics to blithely and viciously attack a feisty, pragmatic, effective woman -- one who has shown the ability to keep the New York City Council alive and effective, one who has been able to both work with the mayor and oppose him, one who has shown up for us again and again -- while at the same time giving Eliot Spitzer and Anthony Weiner "second chances" and giving all the other hetroprivileged male candidates the benefit of the doubt, adorning them with labels like "the progressive candidate" or supporting a vicious and foolhardy ABC campaign (funded by wealthy realtors!) with no thought as to who that "anyone-other-than" candidate might be.
For the past 15 years Christine Quinn has shown up for me for every event, cause and need of my community. And that community is deep and wide. It includes every woman in New York City, every gay man, lesbian, bisexual and transgender person. It includes renters like me (as opposed to owners); it includes those who access the city food bank and seek affordable housing. It includes those who unfairly face police abuse. It includes HIV-positive and other vulnerable persons. It includes every gay person who wants to be included in the St. Patrick's Day Parade. It includes every woman who wants the right to choose. It includes all of us. Christine Quinn understands the issues and dynamics of violence and law enforcement in this city like no other politician and has worked to meet them head-on for years. I could go on.
At a rally on Christopher Street on Friday night, longtime activist Brendan Fay, standing in the crowd, recalled to me the experience of sitting in a paddy wagon with Christine, having been arrested together in a protest demonstration. The Clementi family was there to support Chris, who had come to their side when Tyler died. Elizabeth Byard, Danny O'Donnell, Tom Duane, Edie Windsor, Chely Wright and so many others testified regarding her stalwart civic and community involvement, her good judgment, her friendship and her good faith.
There is no one more progressive who is running for mayor of New York , so it is time to stop thinking, "Maybe I'll vote for a more progressive politician."
Over time, one of the goals and successes of our progressive LGBT movement has been to establish ourselves as an important voting bloc. This is not about identity politics, my friend. It is about the power of community -- and exercising the power in unity. Let's see Christine through to the runoff and give New York City the runoff it deserves.
Christine Quinn has shown up for me, and you, and now it is the time to show up for her.
Join me, but if somehow you can't, I implore you, keep the vitriol down. As I've said elsewhere, Chris doesn't have horns; she has chutzpah, smarts, vision, humor, personal strength, pragmatism, and the capacity to deliver, and, like every other human being, she too has flaws. She is the best candidate for mayor we have -- and a model for the nation as well -- and she is ours.
Paul Schindler in Gay City News says it clearly. If you are on the fence at all or, as a friend said, "feeling guilty because I'm not voting for Chris," give it a read. Reconsider. Do the right thing for yourself, our community, and New York City. Vote for Chris Quinn. She is the very, very best we have.