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Fri Dec 21, 2012, 09:02 PM

Hormel questions sincerity of Hagel apology for 1998 anti-gay remarks

Source: Washington Blade

James Hormel — the nation’s first openly gay ambassador — questioned the sincerity of an apology that former Sen. Chuck Hagel (R) issued on Friday over anti-gay remarks he made in 1998. Hormel pledged to oppose Hagel’s confirmation as defense secretary unless he affirms before the Senate that he will support equal rights for LGBT military families.

Speaking with the Washington Blade from his San Francisco office, Hormel criticized the apology that Hagel issued for calling Hormel “openly aggressively gay” — because it was sent only to media outlets.

“If there is an apology out there in the universe, it hasn’t reached my office,” Hormel added. “So, until that time comes, I’m just doing my work here. When I see an apology, then I’ll consider it.”

Hormel, who since serving in his post in Luxembourg has become a philanthropist and major political donor, further criticized the statement because it was delivered 14 years after the remarks were made and comes at a time when the former senator is seeking high office. President Obama is reportedly considering him for the role of defense secretary, but hasn’t yet made any announcement.

Read more: http://www.washingtonblade.com/2012/12/21/hormel-questions-sincerity-of-hagel-apology-for-1998-anti-gay-remarks/

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Arrow 38 replies Author Time Post
Reply Hormel questions sincerity of Hagel apology for 1998 anti-gay remarks (Original post)
dlwickham Dec 2012 OP
geek tragedy Dec 2012 #1
Solly Mack Dec 2012 #2
NealK Dec 2012 #3
alp227 Dec 2012 #4
dlwickham Dec 2012 #6
Solly Mack Dec 2012 #10
obamanut2012 Jan 2013 #36
Behind the Aegis Jan 2013 #37
Skittles Dec 2012 #5
dlwickham Dec 2012 #7
Skittles Dec 2012 #8
dlwickham Dec 2012 #17
Skittles Dec 2012 #28
Vanje Dec 2012 #11
awoke_in_2003 Dec 2012 #14
Purveyor Dec 2012 #9
Douglas Carpenter Dec 2012 #12
Bluenorthwest Dec 2012 #16
Douglas Carpenter Dec 2012 #20
Bluenorthwest Dec 2012 #31
Douglas Carpenter Dec 2012 #32
JI7 Dec 2012 #13
Bluenorthwest Dec 2012 #15
Honeycombe8 Dec 2012 #23
senseandsensibility Dec 2012 #18
LeftyMom Dec 2012 #19
Skittles Dec 2012 #29
BigDemVoter Dec 2012 #33
dlwickham Jan 2013 #34
plantwomyn Dec 2012 #21
karynnj Dec 2012 #22
obamanut2012 Jan 2013 #38
Honeycombe8 Dec 2012 #24
joshcryer Dec 2012 #25
davidpdx Dec 2012 #26
TwilightGardener Dec 2012 #27
davidpdx Dec 2012 #30
randome Jan 2013 #35

Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 09:16 PM

1. 100% correct. nt

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 09:51 PM

2. Don't blame him.

"...14 years after the remarks were made and comes at a time when the former senator is seeking high office."

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Response to Solly Mack (Reply #2)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:14 PM

3. Yeah.

I don't blame him either.

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Response to Solly Mack (Reply #2)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:18 PM

4. But why did the Human Rights Campaign accept Hagel's apology?

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Response to alp227 (Reply #4)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:30 PM

6. to be politically expedient?

so as not to oppose Obama?

I'm not a big fan of the HRC-they've had a tendency to roll over for those who put money in their coffers or those who can do them favors

they're not always on the side of the little gay

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Response to alp227 (Reply #4)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 12:13 AM

10. Not for me to say, as I don't know their motives.

Their motives, whatever they may be, don't change my thinking.

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Response to alp227 (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 03:24 PM

36. Because it's the HRC

They are part of the DC Establishment.

Plus, HORMEL was the target of Hagel's attack.

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Response to obamanut2012 (Reply #36)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 03:25 PM

37. THANK YOU!!!!!

Finally, someone says the damn truth about that organization!

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:20 PM

5. "aggressively gay"

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Response to Skittles (Reply #5)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:31 PM

7. uh yeah

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Response to dlwickham (Reply #7)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 10:33 PM

8. you're.....you're being aggressive right now aren't you ???

I WILL KICK AGGRESSIVE DLWICKHAM ASS!

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Response to Skittles (Reply #8)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 10:18 AM

17. bite my ass



sorry couldn't resist

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Response to dlwickham (Reply #17)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 10:52 PM

28. aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

I WILL KICK DLWICKHAM BITEASS

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Response to Skittles (Reply #5)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:03 AM

11. "Aggressively Gay" is the Scariest kind! nt

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Response to Vanje (Reply #11)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:42 AM

14. No, that would be the Ambigously Gay...

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 11:51 PM

9. So the 'anti-israel' meme didn't work against Hagel so let us try the 'anti-gay' meme? I suggest

the nomination go to Joe Lieberman then we can all go on our 'war hawk' merrily little way!\



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Response to Purveyor (Reply #9)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:24 AM

12. well that is what most (not all to be fair - but most) of this is all about

Obviously Hagel is not anti-Israel either. He is simply and old fashioned hard nosed - national interest - foreign policy realist wonk. He recognizes that America has national interest in the Middle East that includes having a working and congenial relationship of mutual respect with both Israel and the Arab world. Some people don't like that because they know that a movement conservative who believes in a restrained foreign policy has more license to speak than a liberal Democrat who has to constantly balance their desire to speak the speak the truth with the fear of being labeled as "weak on defense."

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Response to Douglas Carpenter (Reply #12)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:19 AM

16. So Douglas....here is Hagel's rant against gay people, with the word 'gay' replaced by the word

'Muslim'. Tell me how you like it, and if you think others should also speak of Muslims in this fashion, that is, should leaders speak of anyone in this fashion:
“They are representing America. They are representing our lifestyle, our values, our standards. And I think it is an inhibiting factor to be Muslim — openly, aggressively Muslim like Mr. Hormel — to do an effective job.”

So what do you think? Is that sort of thing only fine when it attacks gay people, fine always, is this how you'd like to see other groups spoken of to the press, in print? Do you endorse that sort of language when applied to any group other than gay people?

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #16)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 12:31 PM

20. if it was several years ago and he apologized for it and if he would have particular value

Last edited Sun Dec 23, 2012, 04:54 AM - Edit history (1)

and a unique influence to advance the cause of a more stable and peaceful world - and if not appointing him to a senior cabinet position might be losing an exceptional opportunity for advancing a more peaceful and stable world - I would have to consider that too, wouldn't you?

Senator Hagel’s apology is significant–I can’t remember a time when a potential presidential nominee apologized for anything. While the timing appears self-serving, the words themselves are unequivocal–they are a clear apology. Since 1998, fourteen years have passed, and public attitudes have shifted–perhaps Senator Hagel has progressed with the times, too. His action affords new stature to the LGBT constituency, whose members still are treated as second class citizens in innumerable ways. Senator Hagel stated in his remarks that he was willing to support open military service and LGBT military families. If that is a commitment to treat LGBT service members and their families like everybody else, I would support his nomination.

- Ambassador James Hormel

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Response to Douglas Carpenter (Reply #20)

Mon Dec 24, 2012, 08:37 AM

31. Gee your first statement was that it is 'obvious' that this is not anti gay.

You failed to tell me what you think of that quote. Because you know you'd be furious. First you agree with the poster suggesting this is not anti gay as he writes "anti gay". You say it is obvious. Then when asked about how you'd like that language toward others, you say 'if if if' and then ask me a question. No actual response about how you view such a quote.
What do you mean by 'I would have to consider it'? What process and metrics would apply to your consideration of a person who had said Muslims were not fit for public service? What 'considerations' would you make, exactly?
Again, I don't expect you to respond to what is asked of you. You evaded the first direct question. Replied with a question. Intellectually dishonest.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #31)

Mon Dec 24, 2012, 01:53 PM

32. NO! I did not say his comment of several years ago was not anti-gay. Clearly it was

I implied and do believe that he - like most people was once anti-gay and thank goodness he has changed his mind. I said that the campaign against him is in large part - but not entirely - because of his belief in a more balanced policy in regards to the Israel/Palestine conflict. That is what is primarily motivating the campaign to block his nomination. He has apologized for this crude comment regarding gay people of many years ago and the person who was the subject of his very cold words has accepted his apology.

Precisely because he was a strong movement conservative puts him in a particular position to be a strong influence in directing America away from an unbalanced policy in the Middle East and away from irresponsible military interventionism. This is an opportunity that should not be missed.

I think it is a very good thing that he changed his mind about gay people, don't you? Shouldn't people be allowed to change their minds?

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Response to Purveyor (Reply #9)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:27 AM

13. the anti israel stuff was BS, but he DID make anti gay comments and should be called on it

and it should be brought up during the hearings and he should answer them .

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Response to Purveyor (Reply #9)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:08 AM

15. Here is the quote attacking Hormel. This is what Hagel said, which you claim is not anti gay:

“They are representing America. They are representing our lifestyle, our values, our standards. And I think it is an inhibiting factor to be gay — openly, aggressively gay like Mr. Hormel — to do an effective job.”

"And I think it is an inhibiting factor to be gay to do an effective job."

Here is the 'apology' Hagel managed to spit out in most begrudging of language:
"My comments 14 years ago in 1998 were insensitive. They do not reflect my views or the totality of my public record, and I apologize to Ambassador Hormel and any LGBT Americans who may question my commitment to their civil rights. I am fully supportive of ‘open service’ and committed to LGBT military families."

Notice that he says he apologized to Hormel, but Hormel says he has not heard from Hagel. So these words are dishonest on a very basic level.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #15)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:39 PM

23. The Hagel apology IS the apology to Harmel.

Notice that it says, "I apologize to Ambassador Hormel," not "I apologizeD to Ambassador Hormel."

That WAS 14 years ago. Even Clinton was anti-gay, as was most of Congress and most of the country. It was an open, honest statement of Hagel's thinking that being openly gay might, in fact, have a bad effect on his effectiveness as an ambassador. A mild statement for the times, although I'll grant you that most politicians are not honest and forthcoming with their thoughts, so in that respect, Hagel was different.

At the end of the article, there's an update that says that Harmel changed his position on Hagel and now supports him. It says,

Senator Hagel’s apology is significant–I can’t remember a time when a potential presidential nominee apologized for anything. While the timing appears self-serving, the words themselves are unequivocal–they are a clear apology. Since 1998, fourteen years have passed, and public attitudes have shifted–perhaps Senator Hagel has progressed with the times, too. His action affords new stature to the LGBT constituency, whose members still are treated as second class citizens in innumerable ways. Senator Hagel stated in his remarks that he was willing to support open military service and LGBT military families. If that is a commitment to treat LGBT service members and their families like everybody else, I would support his nomination.

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 12:20 PM

18. I'm not interested in apologizing for Hagel's remarks nor does his apology seem sincere, but

did anyone at the time question him about what he meant by aggressively gay? It's just such a bizarre thing to say.

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Response to senseandsensibility (Reply #18)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 12:28 PM

19. It's the usual comment, along with "in your face" and "shoving it down my throat" only not so Freud.

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Response to senseandsensibility (Reply #18)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 10:55 PM

29. it means gay folk who dare to be themselves

instead of hiding in the closet

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Response to senseandsensibility (Reply #18)

Mon Dec 24, 2012, 02:08 PM

33. Yeah, I was wondering the same thing!

So it's not good to be "aggressively gay." Does that mean it's ok to be "passively" gay?

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Response to BigDemVoter (Reply #33)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 02:54 PM

34. only if you're a bottom

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 02:50 PM

21. Why Hagel?

I was thinking about this and the first name that came to my mind was Jim Webb. Why not him?

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Response to plantwomyn (Reply #21)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 03:13 PM

22. I think Obama got along well with Hagel on the SFRC. Webb joined that committee in 2007, but

by then, Obama was campaigning for President.

Not to mention, weren't there sexist comments that Webb had made in the past?

The point here might be that many people may have said something in the past that was wrong and should not have been said. The biggest concern - to me - on this is has he REALLY moved past those ideas, or is he apologizing for political reasons. The concern would deal with how he would manage gay people working for the Pentagon and if it would have an impact on dealing with fully moving the military to a point where sexual preference is not an issue in any way.

I am saying this as someone who thought this a good pick because I think that he, Biden and Kerry could jointly have a huge impact on foreign policy.

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Response to plantwomyn (Reply #21)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 03:25 PM

38. I persoanlly think Webb is worse than Hagel

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:40 PM

24. NOT TRUE. At the end of article is Harmel's changed position. He supports Hagel for Sec of Defense.

There's an update at the end of the article:

Senator Hagel’s apology is significant–I can’t remember a time when a potential presidential nominee apologized for anything. While the timing appears self-serving, the words themselves are unequivocal–they are a clear apology. Since 1998, fourteen years have passed, and public attitudes have shifted–perhaps Senator Hagel has progressed with the times, too. His action affords new stature to the LGBT constituency, whose members still are treated as second class citizens in innumerable ways. Senator Hagel stated in his remarks that he was willing to support open military service and LGBT military families. If that is a commitment to treat LGBT service members and their families like everybody else, I would support his nomination.

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #24)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:55 PM

25. Looks like Hormel was disappointed it wasn't a direct apology.

But still considers it an apology. He just wanted a direct phone call as opposed to a media release.

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 09:31 PM

26. He's getting blasted by the left and the right

and he'll end up unsuitable for nomination like Rice. It doesn't matter at all whether any of this stuff is true or not. Both sides are going after Obama's cabinet picks even before they make it to the floor of the Senate.

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Response to davidpdx (Reply #26)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 10:00 PM

27. Rice was perfectly suitable for nomination. Nothing she did

(even the Keystone thing) should have disqualified her. Hagel's the same way. Interesting that the GOP just LURRVES John Kerry all of a sudden...

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #27)

Sun Dec 23, 2012, 04:03 AM

30. Don't get me wrong I agree with you

I think both sides are trying to poison the nominees to get someone either more to the left or right. For the most part I'm glad about Kerry being nominated. The only downside is his seat in MA being open.

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Response to dlwickham (Original post)

Mon Jan 7, 2013, 03:08 PM

35. He was a Conservative. He got better.

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