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NEWS — Saginaw Democrats elect homosexual activist, marriage amendment foe as party chair

March 23, 2010
Homosexual activist’s election as chairman reveals Saginaw Democratic Party at odds with county voters, party’s own base

59 percent of county voters — including blacks and union
households — approved marriage amendment in 2004

SAGINAW, Mich. — A Midland resident who co-authored Michigan’s
Marriage Protection Amendment — overwhelmingly approved by state and Saginaw County voters in 2004 — Friday said the Saginaw County Democratic Party’s election last week of an openly homosexual activist party chair is further evidence that party officials are at odds not only with county voters but with the party’s own base of African-American and union households who strongly supported the amendment.

Gary Glenn, president of the American Family Association of Michigan, said that “by electing an openly homosexual activist committed to repealing constitutional protection of one-man, one-woman marriage, local Democrats have allowed their party to be taken over by a chairman whose personal agenda is dramatically at odds with the traditional family values strongly shared not only by most voters but by key constituencies within the party itself.”

“In solidarity especially with African-American and union households who strongly supported the Marriage Protection Amendment,” Glenn said, “we encourage rank-and-file Democrats in Saginaw County to take their party back from homosexual activists such as Garnet Lewis, who will obviously steer the party in a direction not supported by voters of either party.”

The Saginaw News last Friday reported the county party’s election of former legislative candidate and Central Michigan University administrator Garnet Lewis, but notably failed to disclose to its readers any mention of her self-professed sexual identity, affiliation with state and local homosexual activist groups, or the strong personal offense at voter approval of the Marriage Protection Amendment that she said was the primary motivator of her involvement in county politics.

Coverage of Lewis’ election by a homosexual activist newsmagazine in Detroit was more forthright. Between the Lines reported that Lewis is “an open lesbian (and) advocate for (lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender) rights” who has served on the boards of both statewide and local homosexual activist lobbying groups.

Following her loss in a 2008 bid for the state House of Representatives, during which she was endorsed by state and national homosexual activist groups, held a fundraiser at a “gay” bar near Detroit, and benefited from over $300,000 in independent expenditures by a political action committee funded by an openly homosexual billionaire in Kalamazoo, Lewis wrote on a homosexual activist blog, Rainbow Mittens, that her political activism was in direct response to voter approval of the Marriage Protection Amendment.

“I decided to become engaged in local politics on November 5, 2004 at approximately 1:23 a.m.,” Lewis wrote. “George Bush had won a second term but, most importantly, Proposal 2 (the Marriage Protection Amendment) passed here in the state. …(T)he majority of people in this state were saying that my relationship did not matter and should not be legally recognized. It was offensive to me then, and it remains offensive to me now. After discussing the passage of Proposal 2 with my partner, we both decided to get involved locally in our county political organization. It was that or move to Canada or Germany.”

Lewis’ stand — though out of step with the 59 percent of voters who in 2004 approved the amendment both statewide and in Saginaw County — is nonetheless consistent with state Democratic Party officials’ allegiance to homosexual activists’ political agenda, Glenn said.

Delegates to the Michigan Democratic Party convention in 2006 approved a platform which stated: “We call for the repeal of 2004 Proposal 2 which adds discrimination to our State Constitution.”

The full text of the amendment states: “To secure and preserve the benefits of marriage for our society and for future generations of children, the union of one man and one woman in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as a marriage or similar union for any purpose.”

African-Americans supported amendment

Glenn pointed to the Marriage Protection Amendment’s approval in 2004 by voters in heavily African-American population centers; for example, by 51 percent of the vote in the city of Saginaw, 52 percent in the city limits of Detroit and Flint, 57 percent in Muskegon, and 67 percent in Benton Harbor.

He also cited a Detroit Free Press report the day after the November 2004 general election detailing an exit poll of 2,343 Michigan voters which found that the amendment had been supported by 59 percent of all black voters in the state. (“Gay marriage ban easily wins in state,” by Dawson Bell, Detroit Free Press, November 3, 2004)

Union households supported amendment

Glenn also pointed to a Detroit News poll in mid-October 2004 which found that “two-thirds of union households support Proposal 2, identical to the level of support in non-union households,” according to a statewide survey of 600 likely voters conducted by Mitchell Research & Communications, Inc. of East Lansing. (“Same-sex marriage ban likely to pass,” by Charlie Cain and Mark Hornbeck, Detroit News Lansing Bureau, October 22, 2004)

Half of all Democrats supported the amendment…and still do

The same Detroit News survey found that 51 percent of Democrats overall were planning to vote in favor of the amendment. (Detroit News, Oct. 22, 2004)
Five years later, that support hasn’t waned, according to a September 2009 poll by Lansing
Democratic political consultant Mark Grebner which found that half of all Democrats said they would vote against a ballot measure attempting to repeal the amendment.

Remarkably, Glenn said, the Grebner poll suggests that supporters of the Marriage Protection Amendment would have “a reasonable shot at defeating any ballot campaign to repeal the amendment even if Democrats were the only ones allowed to vote.”

Add in the 58 percent of independents and 91 percent of Republicans who said they too would vote against repeal of the amendment, according to Grebner, and such an election “wouldn’t even be close,” Glenn said.

“That’s why electing a chairman whose primary motivation is her personal agenda of promoting so-called homosexual ‘marriage’ is so curious, unless they’re in the business of helping the opposition, since it likely offends half the Democrats and will further alienate independents and Republicans from Democratic candidates,” Glenn said.

“Politically, it might have been better for Saginaw County Democrats if Chairman Lewis had moved to Canada or Germany instead, as she threatened,” he said.

He noted that in 2004, rank-and-file Michigan Republicans in state convention overwhelmingly adopted a resolution endorsing the Marriage Protection Amendment, by a vote of 1,259 to 40.

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