Ed Koch, who never married and deflected questions about his own sexuality, said the White House shouldn’t have answered questions about Elena Kagan’s sexuality, but rather, denied the legitamicy of the question.
Koch, in a commentary he emailed out:
Solicitor General Elena Kagan’s sexual orientation is the subject of much discussion in blogs and mainstream newspapers. The White House response denied Ms. Kagan is a lesbian. Instead, shouldn’t the White House have denounced the speculation and conveyed that such inquiries are improper?
By denying she is lesbian instead of denouncing the inquiry, the White House is implicitly stating sexual orientation is a legitimate issue of discussion in the confirmation process.
On the positive side, raising the issue of Ms. Kagan’s sexual orientation may give more support to Barney Frank’s bill with 198 co-sponsors in the House and Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon with a similar bill and 45 co-sponsors barring employment discrimination by the federal government against people because of their sexual identity. Only 20 states in the Union – New York being one of them – have such legislation. The current debate regarding Ms. Kagan’s candidacy demonstrates the imperative of passing such legislation. How many U.S. Senators now considering Ms. Kagan’s nomination will vote for such legislation? Write to yours and let’s find out. Also, ask your member of Congress.