If Gabriel Gomez Supports ENDA, Why Doesn’t He Say So Publicly?

Today Washington Blade claims that “Gabriel Gomez endorses ENDA“, the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Congressman Ed Markey and Mr. Gomez are vying for the U. S. Senate seat recently vacated by Secretary of State John Kerry.

In an email provided to the Washington Blade, Gabriel Gomez, a former Navy SEAL, announced his support for the legislation.

“I support ENDA, because I do not believe in discrimination of any kind, including discrimination by sexuality,” Gomez said.

“An email provided to the Washington Blade” isn’t convincing evidence that Gomez’s alleged support for ENDA is genuine or durable. Nowhere is there a statement on ENDA on Gomez’s website, Facebook page or Twitter feed.

Mr. Gomez refused to state his support for ENDA when asked directly at a press event two weeks ago. If he has now decided to declare his support for the bill, why do it via an unattributed email to a newspaper based in Washington, D. C.? Why not splash it all over his online media, the Boston Globe and other Massachusetts media outlets? Remember, he’s running for one of Massachusetts’s U. S. Senate seats, not for a seat on the D. C. council.

Either the Gomez campaign is too inept to get his genuine ENDA-supportive message out to the voters of Massachusetts, or Gomez wants to dangle alleged support for the bill before LGBT activists in Washington, D. C. and online LGBT readers while keeping it quiet among conservative Republican voters in Massachusetts.

Either way, Mr. Gomez still comes off as shifty on the issue. I thought Navy SEALs acted decisively. Evidently not necessarily, some 17 years after leaving the Navy.

The special election to fill the vacant Senate seat is June 25th.

Cross-posted at Pam’s House Blend.


14 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. This is Massachusetts.

    It would seem that Gomez would gain more votes than he would lose by publicly supporting ENDA.

    • In the general population, yes

      But he can’t afford to lose conservatives whose vote he already has. Many people who’d support ENDA already have decided to support Markey. Such is the conundrum of a Republican candidate in Massachusetts. Too far to the right, you can’t get to 50%. Too far to the left, you’ll lose your base…and you can’t get to 50%.

  2. Very, very subtle

    I suspect this vagueness is completely intentional. It serves two purposes.

    First off, it helps Mr Gomez claim to be a “new kind of Republican” because he is not breathing fire on guns, gays, and immigration. It protects him from what fenway49 describes above: staking out positions appealing to Massachusetts centrists that will hemorrhage conservative votes.

    Second though, it’s part of the whole unpolitician thing. Politicians make promises, take positions, and do complicated things like vote against bills you’d think they support. The whole position-taking thing is very politician-like. So Mr Gomez is trying to avoid all that by saying he’ll just go in and do what needs to be done, vote his conscience, and listen to his constituents.

    Possibly there are low-information voters to whom this is appealing. Instead of having to decide between the two candidates based on very confusing issues they lack the time to understand, low-information voters can decide entirely on the basis of personality which everyone believes he or she can judge accurately, effortlessly, and quickly.

    • It is indeed very subtle...

      and I think this is a very perceptive comment. I’ve been thinking recently along the same lines. Where do most people get their ideas of government? It would be interesting to know. I wouldn’t be surprised if in many cases it is in elementary school — perhaps high school — when students are elected to the “student council”, or whatever it’s called nowadays. These bodies are not set up to handle issues — they are set up to organize proms, or pep rallies — to “do what has to be done”.

      • Carl - we got rid of civics 20 years ago.

        So now, we have low information voters who usually don’t bother to vote at all, and get their information from the Colbert Report. They don’t know it’s a satire.

        Watch Jesse Watters if you think I’m overly harsh.

        • I always got the sense...

          …that the Stewart/Colbert audiences were high-information folks, otherwise I’m not sure the humor would work.

          • Those wacky conservatives!

            Actually, come to think of it, every now and then one finds conservatives who have not realized Colbert is doing satire; they take him at his word.

            This seems like just the sort of thing the other Stephen, Stephen Gulitti that is, might lavish some very long sentences on.

        • I agree with Christopher

          I think you meant to say Rush listeners and Beck viewers, because Colbert requires informed intelligence to enjoy. ;)

          • Unless

            you’re talking about the conservative viewers who think Colbert’s really one of them. Now THEY don’t get it’s a satire.

        • The anti-hypocrisy bot returns again

          The beautiful consistency and precise, finely engineered manner in which it dispenses these “a liberal does something just like it but you don’t condemn it” tidbits make the bot a pleasure to behold. As predictable as spring’s robins and as insightful as the cawing of crows.

    • It's important to remember that...

      … the reason Lincoln won (by most accounts) his debate with Douglass was because he was able to remain vague and uncommitted on the slavery issue while cornering his opponent into taking a position. Once you’re defined on an issue, then you’re guaranteed to lose some issue voters.

      That said, whatever waffling he does, he’s still stuck with his party and for the party his win would strengthen issues are quite well defined. This is why he’s simultaneously avoiding the majority leader question.

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Tue 25 Apr 8:17 PM