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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
News from the Michigan Democratic Party
Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Contact: Joshua Pugh, firstname.lastname@example.org, 517-575-7180
In Wake of the Agema Controversy, Michigan Democratic Leaders Hold LGBT Community Forum
FERNDALE – At an LGBT community forum, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz today called the GOP rebrand effort a failure after Michigan Republicans tolerated homophobic remarks from a party leader and national Republicans have blocked anti-discrimination legislation that would protect LGBT Americans.
“In Michigan, and all over the country we’ve seen example after example of the GOP’s failure to speak out against intolerant, insensitive remarks like those we heard from Representative Agema a few days ago,” said DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz. “Disrespectful comments like his and the GOP’s decision to block legislation that protects LGBT Americans from discrimination remind us just how out of touch the GOP is with Michigan and the American people.”
DNC Chair Wasserman Schultz was joined by U.S. Representative and Senate Candidate Gary Peters and Gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauerwho have condemned Agema’s remarks. Neither Republican National Committeewoman Terri Lynn Land nor Governor Snyder would call for Agema’s resignation.
“My family has been in Michigan for generations- right here in Oakland County, and the Michigan values I was raised with, and my wife Colleen and I raised our own children with, and that we share with families all over Michigan are of fairness and equality for everyone and every family,” Peters said. “Staying silent in the face of discrimination is not a Michigan value. As Michiganders, we know that our diversity makes us strong, and I am proud and honored to fight for all Michigan families.”
“Gov. Snyder has been a big disappointment when it comes to protecting Michigan’s LGBT citizens from discrimination,” said Schauer. “The Governor is hurting our economy by opposing marriage equality and banning domestic partner benefits. As Governor, I’ll work to make Michigan a more inclusive state, so we can attract the best workers and compete for 21st Century jobs.”
The Michigan Democratic Party has continued to hold Terri Lynn Land and Governor Snyder accountable for tolerating discriminatory remarks in the Republican Party. At today’s event, prominent LGBT leaders and activists shared concerns over Michigan Republicans refusal to support and represent their community.
LANSING – In what is becoming an increasing trend, RNC Committeewoman and U.S. Senate Candidate Terri Lynn Land skipped yet another event this weekend. This time, she canceled on the Michigan Republican State Committee Meeting in Lansing – apparently hiding from her fellow RNC member Dave Agema. Her campaign has signaled that she does not think Agema’s homophobia is important.
“Not only has RNC Committeewoman Terri Lynn Land failed to address Dave Agema’s homophobia, she’s now practically gone into hiding. Ms. Land has made clear that she doesn’t think publicly censuring Agema’s bigotry or calling for his resignation are important, but hiding from her Party and skipping the State Committee meeting during this controversy is a new low,” said Joshua Pugh, Michigan Democratic Party Communications Director.
Land has faced increasing scrutiny for her silence on fellow RNC Committee member Dave Agema’s antigay and homophobic remarks. Agema spoke at the GOP committee meeting this past weekend that Land skipped. Instead of personally condemning the remarks, as many prominent Michigan politicians from both parties have done, Land put out a press release showing her ahead in a poll. Land also clarified that, despite the disrespect and bigotry shown by Agema, this would not be an issue for her.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
News from the Michigan Democratic Party
Friday, December 13, 2013
LANSING – Debbie Dingell, Democratic National Committeewoman from Michigan, today questioned if Republican National Committeewoman and U.S. Senate candidate Terri Lynn Land will censure her fellow RNC member Dave Agema this weekend.
“The Republican State Central Committee meets this weekend, and it will be interesting to see if Terri Lynn Land will stand up against the recent unacceptable remarks from RNC Committeeman David Agema, that were offensive as much in their bigotry as in their ignorance.
“I hope she will use this meeting as an opportunity to show leadership in condemning his remarks and calling for his resignation. I believe as women leaders we have a responsibility to stand up against hatred and bigotry in any form….and that doing so is not a partisan issue.
“Of course, we should be to engage in heated and passionate discussion and we don’t always have to agree. But neither should we engage in name-calling.
“Every American should be able to live in this country and in their community free of discrimination based on race, creed, color and sexual orientation. Thankfully, we have made great progress in recent years and the horrific remarks of Mr. Agema’s are not only stunning, but unacceptable. Many conservative members of the Republican Party have already voiced their concern about the tone and tenor of his remarks, and I hope as a leader in her Party she will add her voice to those already expressed.”
LANSING – Mark LaChey, Chair of the Michigan Democratic Party LGBT Caucus today criticized Michigan’s RNC members David Agema and Terri Lynn Land for accepting repeated instances of homophobia and hate speech. He singled out Committeewoman Terri Lynn Land for refusing to censure David Agema, dismissing the seriousness of his remarks, and signalling that the Republican Party tolerates bigotry.
His statement follows:
“As an openly Gay man, I am deeply offended and troubled by both of Michigan’s RNC representatives: first, Dave Agema, who continues to spew extreme hate, vitriol and homophobia and then also, Terri Lynn Land, who wants to replace U.S. Senator Carl Levin and who initially refused to comment and now won’t even publicly censure Mr. Agema or call for his resignation. The onus is on Ms. Land more than anyone, as his fellow RNC member, to tell Michigan whether the RNC accepts hate speech.
“It is more baffling still that RNC Committeewoman Terri Lynn Land found the time to personally address her poll results yesterday, but when it came time to stand up to intolerance and bigotry, she’s still sitting on her hands, refusing to answer questions, and eventually sending staff in her stead.
“If Ms. Land cannot show she won’t tolerate discrimination and bigotry in her own Party by speaking out and calling for Mr. Agema’s resignation, how can we expect her to do what’s right in Washington as our U.S. Senator? There is more than one way to fight bigotry and intolerance, but all of them require speaking up and then voting for candidates who believe in equal opportunity and justice for all Michiganders.”