The revelation that Senator John
McCain's Chief of Staff Mark Buse is gay has drawn seemingly
contradictory statements from dissimilar Republican groups.
Gay activist Mike Rogers delivered his
Roy Cohn award to Buse at his Washington D.C. office on Monday. The
award recognizes high-profile gays and lesbians who work against the
interests of the gay and lesbian community. There is no record of
Buse acknowledging he's gay publicly.
In making his case against Buse, Rogers
said: “Mark Buse is not just a chief of staff for a homophobic
United States senator, but he is helping that senator get elected to
the White House.”
Rogers wrote on his blog Monday that
three sources have confirmed to him that Buse is gay and in a
long-term relationship with another man. And an ex-boyfriend of some
twenty years has also stepped forward, speaking to satellite radio
host Michelangelo Signorile.
Scott Tucker, communications director
for the Log Cabin Republicans – the gay Republicans – called the
outing a non-event.
“There is no 'bombshell',” Tucker
wrote in response to the Michelangelo Signorile headline Hypocrisy
Bombshell: Antigay John McCain has a Gay Chief of Staff. “Mark
Buse has been openly gay for years and has acknowledged as much. So
the notion that he has been 'outed' is simply false.”
Still, a search of the Log Cabin
Republicans website and blog results in only one mention of Mark
Buse, Tucker's Tuesday post. One would think, if Buse was openly gay
as Tucker suggests, that the group would have lauded him, maybe
Tucker called Rogers' outing a “stunt”
and a “witch hunt,” taking grave offense at Signorile and Rogers'
use of the word homophobic in describing the Arizona senator.
“Can we please stop childishly
lobbing the 'homophobic' insult at Republicans who don't agree with
us on every issue? ... Calling John McCain homophobic doesn't make it
so. John McCain is anything but homophobic.”
Tucker used the outing as evidence that
McCain was an inclusive Republican. “John McCain is an inclusive
Republican who hires the best people, regardless of sexual
But while gay Republicans were
insisting the outing only strengthened the case for McCain as a gay
ally, others in the party were alarmed.
Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr. a senior
pastor at the Washington, D.C. Hope Christian Church, called the
revelation that Buse is gay an attack on Christians.
“The pro-gay, anti-church groups see
themselves in a death-lock in a war – and they hope to create a
sense of disunity among Christians around [the question] 'can we
really trust McCain?'” Jackson told One News Now.
Jackson went on to
encourage McCain to take a stronger, more vocal anti-gay position.
“I wish [McCain]
was more engaged positively [on the issue of banning gay marriage],
because he's getting the negative attack no matter what.”
While McCain has
voted against a federal constitutional ban against gay marriage, he
supports state bans that bar gays from marrying, and campaigned for a
constitutional amendment banning gay marriage in Arizona. He has
said gays and lesbians should not be allowed to adopt or foster
Of course, in a
tent as large as the Republican Party, there is room enough for
diverging points of view and disagreement. But aren't these opinions
more similar than contrary?
Both Tucker and
Jackson view Buse's gay outing as an attack and the outers as evil
doers – they only differ in their rational in objecting to it.
Tucker finished his
post with, “How ugly.”