This article was originally published in the October 28, 1994 issue of the Boston Phoenix
Gay-and-lesbian community activists are heavily involved in what the chairman of the Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance of Massachusetts, Todd Fernandez, calls "a full-court press to ensure that Ted Kennedy's re-elected."
An obvious exception: the Log Cabin Club of Massachusetts, a gay Republican group that endorsed Kennedy's rival, Mitt Romney.
Kennedy garnered 80 percent of the vote at a fractious Alliance endorsement meeting packed with gay members of the GOP. And the usually right-of-center editor of Bay Windows, Jeff Epperly, penned a hagiographic editorial in favor of Kennedy.
"Kennedy's the single most important senator in the United States for the future of gay-and-lesbian equality," says Fernandez, who touts a long list of Kennedy's achievements.
Among them are Kenned's sponsorship of such pro-gay legislation as the Gay and Lesbian Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (which includes anti-discrimination protections for people with HIV and AIDS), and the recently introduced Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 1994.
Moreover, pro-Kennedy forces cite Ted's relentless battles against the anti-gay attacks of North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms.
But Log Cabin president Mark Groshko thinks Kennedy's time has passed.
"I don't believe that Kennedy, because he's on one extreme of the Senate, will be able to push affirmative measures through to passage. It takes strong support from the middle of the political spectrum," says Goshko, who adds he has no reason to doubt Romney's denial of accusation that he made anti-gay remarks in his former role as a high-ranking lay official in the Mormon Church.