United States Senator Mark Kirk

NOVEMBER 4, 2010 UPDATE: Mark Kirk, an anti-gay closeted US Representative has been elected to serve in the Senate. If you’d like to congratulate Mark, pls RT this:

@michaelrogersdc Congratulate IL @Kirk4senate – Senate’s newest anti-gay closet case pls RT

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The original post:

TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES

If you’ve been around long enough, you’ll remember the original television game show Truth or Consequences. (For those around longer, it was preceded by a radio show of the same name and format.) It was rather simple, answer a question correctly or “suffer” the consequences. In this case, consequence meant the performance of “usually a zany and embarrassing stunt.” I use the term “suffer” lightly, as most contestants tried to give the wrong answer just so they could perform the assigned punishment activity.

The same game exists in politics. In DC, the format is a bit different. Instead of a handful of players each week, this version has 535 contestants: 435 in the House, the remainder in the Senate. And, sometimes, you have to wonder if these guys are purposefully getting the answer wrong just so they get to perform the stunt. In this case the punishment is unwanted and is usually an appearance before a camera, humiliation of his wife, and blaming the whole damned thing on the environment in DC while invoking god. Wouldn’t it have been simple enough To Tell the Truth? (Oh, wait, that’s a different game show.)

In many cases, players decide not to play the Capitol’s version of the game, and that’s just fine. If someone doesn’t get up and get the first part wrong, they never face part 2.

Sometimes it’s not so simple.

Why report on Mark Kirk (R-IL)? Why now?

Until now, Mark Kirk elected not to play the typical Washington game. Instead of supporting his party’s dismal record on gay rights, Kirk received Human Rights Campaign ratings of 67% in 2002, 88% in 2004, 76% in 2006 and 85% in 2008. That’s more impressive than a lot of Democrats. I even let Kirk slide by when he didn’t co-sponsor earlier legislation relating to the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. My thoughts then were that he wasn’t THAT bad on gay stuff and that the bill was going nowhere anyway.

Times have changed. Now, for the first time in his congressional career, Mark Kirk really had the chance to stand up and do what is right with the power of a vote. When I heard that five GOPers voted to lift the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell ban I instinctively thought Kirk would be one of them. What a disappointment when he wasn’t. The five were: Judy Biggert (R-IL), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Ron Paul (R-TX), Joseph Cao (R-LA), and Charles Djou, (R-HI).

“Where was Mark Kirk?” I wondered. I left a message at both the campaign and DC offices of the Representative who wants to be Senator. No one responded. Shocker.

In an effort to move the base in the Illinois Senate race, Kirk decided to tack right and that means throwing the gays (like him) under the bus. And once he voted that way, the phone began to ring. Not one or two, or three but 5 separate individuals contacted me about the now divorced Mr. Kirk. (Mr. and Mrs. Kirk were married from 2001 to 2009, the marriage produced no children.)

Within hours of the DADT repeal vote I was contacted by two people who knew Kirk from his college days.

“In law school in DC everyone knew Mark was gay,” the first source told me. I explained that the information was intriguing, it would not be enough to go on. He continued, “But I had sex with him a number of times.” Well, now we’re onto something I thought. “Could someone verify for me that you knew Kirk and went to school with him?” I asked. “Yes” was the swift reply. “Could you recall personal details about Kirk that others may not know?” “Yes,” he said.

And he did.

The next source claimed to have gone to undergraduate school with Kirk. I asked for proof that he and Kirk were in school together and once that was shared with me, I met with the source. The source introduced me to a man who had also been friends with Kirk in college. They both shared with me their interactions with Kirk, including one sexual in nature. The source who claimed to have sex with Kirk described personal details about the House, um, er, “member.” The description was the same as the first source.

And in DC, Kirk wasn’t all THAT closeted. You see Mark Kirk told me he was gay. Before I had BlogActive, I had a life in Washington. As a fundraiser I raised major gifts from $5,000 to over $1,000,000… You don’t do that kind of work at a keyboard, you do it at events attended by people with money. The movers and shakers and their friends.

It was early 2004 when I was at a social gathering on Capitol Hill. I’m guessing there were 35-40 people present, including the guy who brought me as his guest. While the party was no means a “gay” party, I’d guess that of the men at least 75% were overtly gay. The others present were either straight men or their women friends.

It was at that party that I met Mark Kirk. I was introduced to him by the person I came with and at the time did not realize he was a member of the House. As my friend walked away, Kirk asked me if the man who introduced us was “single or attached.” When I said that he had a partner, Kirk replied disappointingly, “oh, well.” At the end of that interaction I walked away and didn’t think much of it at the time.

Then Kirk became a hypocrite. Kirk voted against repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, despite his being a closeted gay man in the military. As a Commander in the Navy Reserves Kirk has voted to keep a policy that if he were investigated under he would be tossed.

Recently we learned that it’s not just his being a closeted gay man that Kirk lies about; he has a habit of making up awards supposedly given to him by the Navy.

Nice try, Mark. The gig is up.

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