Senator who wants to ban DP benefits in Texas was subject of gay rumors

Posted on 05 Nov 2012 at 12:35pm

Sen. Dan Patrick

If state Sen. Dan Patrick is a closeted homosexual, he’s doing a pretty horrible job of hiding it.

That’s because if there’s anything we’ve learned over the years, it’s that the most rabidly anti-gay public figures often turn out to be gay themselves. See Roy Cohn et al.

On Friday, Houston’s Patrick made a major anti-gay move by requesting an opinion from the attorney general’s office about whether domestic partner benefits offered by local government entities violate Texas’ constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. According to the Houston Chronicle, Patrick is declining to comment on his own views on DP benefits until the AG’s office issues its opinion. (As if we don’t already know what Patrick’s views are. Why would he seek such an opinion if he isn’t against DP benefits?)

Anyhow, even though it’s true that closeted politicians tend to be anti-gay, being anti-gay probably isn’t sufficient grounds to assume that a politician is a closeted homosexual. But in Patrick’s case, it turns out we have more to go on than just that.

Back in May, one of Patrick’s fellow Republicans in the Texas Senate, John Carona of Dallas, pretty much accused Patrick of being homosexual. After Patrick sent an email to every single member of the Senate saying Carona was spreading rumors about his marriage, Carona responded by writing, “Though I have heard rumors regarding your marital status and sexual preferences for a while now, at no time have I told anyone that you are either separated, divorced, or gay.”

Patrick subsequently discussed the episode at some length in a videotaped interview with the Texas Tribune — vehemently denying that he’s gay without ever mentioning the word “gay.” Watch the video below and decide for yourself.

At the time, of course, many thought Carona and Patrick would face off for lieutenant governor, but that was before Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst lost his bid for U.S. Senate.

Coincidentally, it was Carona who just a few weeks ago came out in favor of DP benefits in an interview with Dallas Voice. Now, Patrick wants to strip them.

It’s all pretty convoluted, and clearly good old-fashioned politics are a factor. But it’s also possible that Patrick is in fact gay and that he’s trying to cover it up by pushing anti-gay policy.

If that’s the case, though, he’s not only homosexual but also pretty darn stupid, because these days the assumption is just the opposite.

As gay activist Dan Savage recently asked, “Have we reached tipping point yet? Shouldn’t homophobic politicians and anti-gay bullies be presumed to be gay until they get caught up in a straight sex scandal?”

Watch Patrick’s denial of Carona’s suggestion that he’s gay below.

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