Tuesday, May 29, 2007


(NYTimes) On War Funds, Democrats Saw No Option but to Cede Ground to Bush

Yes, there was an option. DON'T PUSSY OUT!

Don't let the troops be held hostage to this man's insane dream of being a GREAT President.

Don't let them be held hostage to the Republican strategy of holding out until a Democrat is elected so the loss will appear to be HIS/(Her?) fault.

Don't let the Neocon dream of runaway oil profits forever keep our troops in a losing situation.

If he vetoes something, SEND IT BACK.




Great Britain has given us QEII, QEK, and now boxing sensation AMIR KHAN!

I'm not certain I would object to going a "few rounds" with AMIR!

Sunday, May 27, 2007


A 20-Year Old Gay South Carolina Man is Dead In An Alleged Hate Crime .......

An 18 year old man is facing a murder charge after a man he punched died.

The Greenville County Sheriff's Office said that Sean William Kennedy, 20, was walking to his car from a local bar when a car stopped along side him. A man got out, approached Kennedy and then hit him in the face.

Witnesses said the man made a derogatory remark about Kennedy's sexuality. The twenty-year old was openly gay friends said.

Kennedy later died in hospital without regaining consciousness. Investigators believe that after he was punched Kennedy fell to the ground and hit his head on a curb or the pavement.

Based on witness accounts of the attacker and car Sheriff's deputies arrested Andrew Moller, 18.

Moller is being held without bond.

Investigators say they have not determined if the two men knew each other, or what led to the attack.

South Carolina does not have hate crime laws and sexuality is not covered under federal hate laws.

Legislation in Congress to add sexuality to federal law passed the House earlier this month and is pending in the Senate.

Shortly before the House vote the White House issued a statement that if the measure passes Congress the President's aides would recommend he veto it.

A poll released this week by Gallup found that despite the threatened veto 68 percent of Americans support the bill, also called the Matthew Shepard Act.



I've discovered two new BLOGMASTERS! Acutally, they found me, but I'm responding......

I don't want to say much about either one; instead, I invite you to visit each of these two fine gentleman and see/read for yourself why I'm so honored to include them on my blogmaster list.

In Coming Out in Mid-Life in Red America, Michael writes about politics, life with his partner, publishes some great "eye candy"; but most importantly, he writes about the difficulties he's encountered as a married man with children after realizing he is gay (look for those posts, specifically - sad but enlightening). Michael is on my BLOGMASTER list as Michael-In-Norfolk.

In Out in the Middle of Idaho, Dylan simply writes beautifully. His post Blue Eyed Country Menfolk is just wonderful (read every word and you'll understand why I've fallen in love with Big Bob). Dylan is on my BLOGMASTER list as Out In Idaho.

ENJOY~ and tell them dondon009 sent you!

Saturday, May 26, 2007





Al Gore: The Conscience of the Democratic Party

He's eloquent, passionate, relentless, undaunted.

The first political figure to oppose the Iraq war, Al Gore is also the lead champion in the fight against global warming, a passionate defender of our Constitution, and an unyielding voice against the Bush Administration's abuse of power.

Given his unmatched experience and leadership on issues of moral imperative, Gore is increasingly seen as Democrats' best bet to win back the White House.

Friday, May 25, 2007




Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I got tagged by Ric, my good friend and BLOGMASTER from Lisbon, Portugal....

So here are the rules of the tag:

* Post a similar post like this one and add a link back to the person who tagged you.
* List 5 reasons why you blog about the things you blog on your blog.
* Choose your 5 tag ‘victims’ and tag them nicely, just like I did :)
* Write a comment on their blog letting them know that you tagged them. VoilĂ ! Or, as less literate people will say, "Viola!" (Will they?…)

i) I blog to inform my readers about the hypocrisy, bigotry and hate generated towards the LGBT community perpetrated mostly by members of the clergy and those in the political arena.

ii) I blog about my escapades to keep as a personal diary.

iii) I blog to educate myself thru reading other blogs within this worldwide blogging community.

iv) I blog to entertain the blogging community with cartoons, caricatures, photos and stories about myself, my dogs, my travels and sometimes, my sexcapades.

v) I blog because thru blogging, I've met some of the most worderful people on the planet (MY BLOGMASTERS). - Create custom images
Pobble Thoughts
Finding Avalon
Cracker Lilo
Nancy and/or Nancy=)

Visit Ric here!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


Look at the face of this young man. Look at the beauty in his eyes, the joy in his smile..... look at this young man and understand that he was killed because he was gay.

Look at this young man and call or write your senators.... tell them to pass the Matthew Shepard hate crimes bill.


Elke Parker knew her son was special. But it wasn't until his death did she find out the extent of his talents.

"I am. I am who I am. I am the person you see. I would not change who I am for anybody," she read from part of Sean's writing called "I am."

There was another poem she found in Sean's things called "Grin."

"I stand tall with all of my pride. You hate. You discriminate all who are not like you. Yes, your words do hurt. But I stand in the end. I'm a strong person, bigger than you... I'll be standing there with a grin."

"I didn't know I had a poet," Elke said.

What she did know what that her son was handsome, talented, fun-loving and different.

"When Sean told me he was gay, he said mom, I understand if you don't want to love me anymore. I told him there is nothing, ever, that you can do to make me stop loving him," she said.

Sean was her third child, the baby of the family, and Elke says every one was behind him. They wanted him to be what he felt inside.

"I never thought that who sean was, is what would take his life," Elke said.

"You never think to talk to your son about do you want to be cremated or do you want to be buried?" Elke said.

The last week has pushed this mother, to almost break.

"I can't believe how much hate there is in this world," she said. Because she says her son was so much more than just a gay man.

"He was a leader. He was a friend. He was just a giver. No matter what you needed, you didn't even have to ask."

And it was the giving heart that packed Sean's funeral with almost 700 people. Then there were the ones who couldn't make the service.

"On his Myspace we had over 50,000 hits within two days, with messages from people. We knew Sean, we loved Sean, he did this for me, this is how he helped me."

A bit of comfort to his mother.

"I am proud that I was his mom. No. I am proud that I am his mom, not was."

Pride that will not let her son's spirit fade. So Elke will be pushing for a hate crime bill in South Carolina in Sean's memory.

"It may not help Sean today, but I want it to help future victims that they can be assured that there is justice."

Justice for Sean.

"If your son or daughter is different, you need to support them for who they really need to be," Elke said.

And who Sean was lives on in his infectious smile.

"This young man made such an impact on people's lives. He died way too soon, but, he will be remembered," Elke said.

The family believes it was hate behind the blows thrown outside Brew's.

Federal and local law enforcement agents are still trying to figure out if 18-year-old Steven Andrew Moller will be charged with a hate crime in the death.

He has already been charged with murder.

NOTE: I wrote about Sean Kennedy's murder on May 19, 2007. I did not have the photographs or his mother's comments at that time. I want this young man's murder to have an impact..... the HATE must stop!

I've brought the original post forward. It's directly below this post.


On the day of his funeral, a tribute to Jerry Falwell; in his own words.....

"The idea that religion and politics don't mix was invented by the Devil to keep Christians from running their own country."

"The ACLU is to Christians what the American Nazi party is to Jews."

"I hope I live to see the day when, as in the early days of our country, we won't have any public schools. The churches will have taken them over again and Christians will be running them. What a happy day that will be!"

"AIDS is the wrath of a just God against homosexuals. To oppose it would be like an Israelite jumping in the Red Sea to save one of Pharaoh's charioteers ... AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals; it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals."

"Nothing will motivate conservative evangelical Christians to vote Republican in the 2008 presidential election more than a Democratic nominee named Hillary Rodham Clinton - not even a run by the devil himself ... I certainly hope that Hillary is the candidate. She has $300 million so far. But I hope she's the candidate. Because nothing will energize my [constituency] like Hillary Clinton. If Lucifer ran, he wouldn't." --at a "Values Voter Summit"

"Grown men should not be having sex with prostitutes unless they are married to them."

"Billy Graham is the chief servant of Satan in America."

"He is purple — the gay-pride color, and his antenna is shaped like a triangle — the gay pride symbol." –from a "Parents Alert" issued in Jerry Falwell's National Liberty Journal, warning that "Tinky Winky," a character on the popular PBS children's show, "Teletubbies," may be gay.

"You've got to kill the terrorists before the killing stops. And I'm for the president to chase them all over the world. If it takes 10 years, blow them all away in the name of the Lord."

"The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way -- all of them who have tried to secularize America -- I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.'" --on the 9/11 attacks.

Monday, May 21, 2007

MURDERED ~ for being gay

Vigils were held throughout the state of Florida today in memory of Ryan Keith Skipper, a 25-year-old Polk County man who was viciously murdered on March 14, 2007; his body left on the side of a road in what the Sheriff's office is classifying as an anti-gay hate crime.

Ryan was brutally stabbed at least 20 times and his car and a laptop computer were stolen. According to witnesses, two suspects drove Ryan's bloody car around and bragged to their friends about savagely killing him.

Joseph Eli Bearden, 21, and William David Brown Jr., 20, (giving the standard excuse that Ryan was trying to hit on them) were indicted this past Friday and face charges of first-degree murder and robbery with a deadly weapon.

Ryan's murder was not an isolated incident, but rather the latest in an epidemic of anti-gay hate violence in Florida and around the nation. Anti-gay hate crimes are at their highest level ever in Florida, and second only to racist attacks in overall numbers.

According to the Florida Attorney General's office, hate crimes targeting LGBT Floridians have increased 33% in the most violent categories during the two most recently reported years. The silence of Florida's leadership in the face of this brutal murder must not go unchallenged.

Living in Florida, I only read about this murder today. Although Ryan was killed one month ago, this is sadly not the first example of a mainstream media blackout when it comes to gay men being murdered or going missing.

We are still waiting for the big media to cover the cases of three young gay men who have been missing for years in the Tampa Bay area.

James Shumaker has been missing since Oct. 20, 1995; Bradley Lee Williams has been missing since June 9, 2001; and Mark Allen Thompson vanished Nov. 1, 2001. The cases have never received any statewide or national attention.

Likewise, the murders of Jason Galehouse and Michael Waccholtz in December 2003 received almost no coverage before the arrest of the suspect, Steven Lorenzo.

The Faces of Homophobia

These are the faces of hate, homophobia and murder ..... how ironic that they will hopefully spend the rest of their lives surrounded only by other men.

A grand jury indicted Joseph Eli Bearden, 21 (left), and William David Brown Jr., 20, on charges of first-degree murder and robbery with a deadly weapon in the death of Wahneta resident Ryan Skipper.

The pair could face the death penalty if convicted of the brutal stabbing and robbery of Skipper, whose body was found by a passing motorist at 1:20 a.m. March 14 near Morgan Road and Logan Lane.

Skipper had been stabbed at least 20 times, and his car and laptop computer were stolen.

Skipper's 2007 Chevrolet Aveo was located shortly before 6 p.m. March 14 in Winter Haven at a boat ramp on Lake Pansy, according to sheriff's spokeswoman Carrie Rodgers.

The Sheriff's Office has described Skipper's killing as a hate crime because Skipper was a homosexual.

This murder has been filled with inconsistencies, indirectly blaming Ryan for his own murder.

It is extremely unusual for the arrest record of a murder victim to be released, but when Bearden and Brown were arrested, Sheriff Judd announced that Ryan Skipper had been arrested twice as a juvenile on minor marijuana charges. Conversely, he glossed over the alleged killers’ records, describing them as nonviolent.

If he had been more forthcoming, it would have been clear that these two young men have been up to no good for a while.

Joe Bearden, 21, has seven prior arrests in Polk County, including one for grand theft auto.

William Brown, 20, had been arrested just six days before the murder on cyberstalking charges. He has at least four prior arrests in Polk County.

Finally, Sheriff Judd suggested that while no one deserved to be murdered, Ryan Skipper had it coming. He told the Lakeland Ledger, "What we do know is that Ryan was looking for someone to pick up that evening. And unfortunately for Ryan, he picked up the wrong person."

Saturday, May 19, 2007


Several weeks ago, I posted that George Bush will be remembered as the worse president in the history of America. No one listens to dondon009. Now, it appears that former President Jimmy Carter is jumping on the 009 bandwagon; at least on the issue of international relations.

AP - Former President Carter says President Bush 's administration is "the worst in history" in international relations, taking aim at the White House's policy of pre-emptive war and its Middle East diplomacy.

The criticism from Carter, which a biographer says is unprecedented for the 39th president, also took aim at Bush's environmental policies and the administration's "quite disturbing" faith-based initiative funding.

"I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history," Carter told the Arkansas Democrat -Gazette in a story that appeared in the newspaper's Saturday editions. "The overt reversal of America's basic values as expressed by previous administrations, including those of George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and others, has been the most disturbing to me."

Carter came down hard on the Iraq war.

"We now have endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war where we go to war with another nation militarily, even though our own security is not directly threatened, if we want to change the regime there or if we fear that some time in the future our security might be endangered," he said. "But that's been a radical departure from all previous administration policies."

Carter, who won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, criticized Bush for having "zero peace talks" in Israel. Carter also said the administration "abandoned or directly refuted" every negotiated nuclear arms agreement, as well as environmental efforts by other presidents.

Carter also offered a harsh assessment for the White House's Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, which helped religious charities receive $2.15 billion in federal grants in fiscal year 2005 alone.

The policy from the White House has been to allocate funds to religious institutions, even those that channel those funds exclusively to their own particular group of believers in a particular religion," Carter said. "As a traditional Baptist, I've always believed in separation of church and state and honored that premise when I was president, and so have all other presidents, I might say, except this one."

Douglas Brinkley, a Tulane University presidential historian and Carter biographer, described Carter's comments as unprecedented.

"This is the most forceful denunciation President Carter has ever made about an American president," Brinkley said. "When you call somebody the worst president, that's volatile. Those are fighting words."

Carter also lashed out Saturday at British prime minister Tony Blair . Asked how he would judge Blair's support of Bush, the former president said: "Abominable. Loyal. Blind. Apparently subservient."

"And I think the almost undeviating support by Great Britain for the ill-advised policies of President Bush in Iraq have been a major tragedy for the world," Carter told British Broadcasting Corp. radio.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


"Dance, Tinky Winky; his name calling can't hurt you anymore. 'Jerry Falwell is dead.'"

Falwell created a furor in 1999 when one of his publications suggested that the purse-carrying "Teletubbies" character Tinky Winky was gay.

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Largo, Florida City Manager Steve Stanton lost his job when he announced in February that at the age of 48, married with a 13 year old son; had chosen to live the remainder of his life as a woman. Introducing Susan Ashley Stanton.

LARGO -- She couldn't sleep. She lay for hours in the dark.

In the morning, she would pose for her first portrait, at age 48. All her life, she had dodged and wavered and contemplated every avoidance, even suicide. Now, 12 hours to go.

She got up at 1 a.m., made coffee. She took a mug into the den of her Largo home, pulled out her red journal and started to write:

So here I sit. Alone in the early morning hours. Waiting for the rest of my life to begin.

Her debut would come after four decades of self-examination, in the dust of a leader's best-laid plans, in the remnants of her family. It glowed with the promise of possibility. Like new skin.

She had already lost her job, her friends and her home -- the things that gave her an identity -- for admitting she wasn't the person they knew. Now that she was showing them a second self, would they reject that person too?

She knew that some people would never even see Susan Ashley Stanton.
They would see a man in a dress.

Shedding a life usually means starting over, quietly, somewhere else. Slip town. Get a new job in a place no one knows your name.
For Steve Stanton, that wasn't an option.

He had been Largo's city manager for 14 years. He had rappeled with the firefighters and broken his nose with the SWAT team. When he decided to become a woman, he told only a few people. His wife knew, his son did not. But in February someone told the newspaper.

Then came the speedy firing, and then CNN, the Daily Show and Larry King. Then came the pack of lesbian lawyers telling him whom to talk to, what to say.
As Steve, he was forceful, powerful in a governmental, almost dorky kind of way. Now he took orders. He waffled.

No one really wanted Steve any more. They wanted Susan. But who was she? She was a celebrity no one fully knew. Not even Steve.

Atlanta's Gay Pride Parade asked Susan to be grand marshal. A Chicago transgender convention invited her to speak. The city of Sarasota named Susan a finalist for its city manager job.

Tiptoeing through this transition is Steve-Susan. He is a thinner, longer-haired version of his former self, wearing too-big suits and folding his hands in a girly way.

On Tuesday, things change. Susan will meet with U.S. congressmen to lobby for trangender rights.

Paparazzi will mill around the Capitol. Gone is the carefully crafted plan of how to control the image of Susan. When she emerges in Washington, her photo will likely hit the AP wire and be transmitted around the world.

St. Petersburg Times
Published May 13, 2007

Wednesday, May 09, 2007



Tuesday, May 08, 2007

A Bacon and Cheese Omelet and .........SEX?

I've finally come to the conclusion that I'm much more "romantic" in the morning than in the evening.

This could possibly be the result of having to work six day weeks recently, coming home exhausted with only one desire.... sleep. Waking up refreshed, the mind wanders to other activities.

Sunday morning, a beautiful sunny day with a cool breeze coming in off the Gulf, I decided to take a relaxing stroll thru the park. There were several people working on summer tans, lying on beach towels enjoying the sunshine; including the "Gypsy Prince", sleeping soundly.

I was going to wake him up but feeling a bit romantic, chose instead to serve him "breakfast on towel".

I walked to a nearby restaurant, ordered two full breakfasts, juice and coffee to go and made my way back to the park.

I sat on the grass next to the "Gypsy Prince" and quietly said, "breakfast is served". He woke up smiling in recognition and said: "the coffee smells good, but I had breakfast before coming to the park".

Dammit, dammit, dammit!

We had coffee, I ate breakfast and fed the remainder of this feast to the seagulls.

We talked for a while and after making arrangements to meet that evening at a local club, I left to go shopping.

By the time the Prince called to confirm our date, I had already decided that I was just too tired to go out or to entertain a guest that evening. I just wanted to spend a quiet evening at home, alone with the dogs...... and I did.

We've dated twice since the Gypsy Prince re-surfaced. I know he'll be heading for parts unknown again soon.

Hopefully, we'll get together again before he makes his next move.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The King of Gaffes

President George Bush embellished his reputation for verbal gaffes Monday as he reluctantly prepared to don white tie and tails for a lavish state banquet in honor of Queen Elizabeth II.

The queen, a sprightly 81, gave an embarrassed Bush a gracious nod after he suggested she had celebrated the United States' founding in 1776.

He meant to say she had attended 1976 bicentennial festivities.

"She gave me a look that only a mother could give a child," the president quipped, earning a reserved chuckle from his guest.

The president and the queen took markedly different approaches to their formal remarks.

Bush focused on the partnership between the United States and Britain in Iraq and against terrorism.

In just four minutes, he mentioned "freedom" and "liberty" seven times.

"Your majesty, I appreciate your leadership during these times of danger and decision," he said.

By contrast, the queen said her fifth journey to the United States was an occasion to "step back from our current preoccupations."

Later, Laura Bush made her own minor calendar mistake. She flubbed the year that she and her husband attended the state dinner hosted by President Bush in honor of the queen, saying it was in 1993.

Unlike George Bush who has a favorability rating of 28% as of last week, public affection has increased for Elizabeth, now 81. She enjoys cozy favorability ratings with the American public -- increasing from 71 percent to 77 percent, according to several Gallup polls taken in the past five years.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


George W. Bush now has the worst approval rating of an American president in a generation.

According to the new NEWSWEEK Poll, the public’s approval of Bush has sunk to 28 percent, an all-time low for this president in our poll, and a point lower than Gallup recorded for his father at Bush Sr.’s nadir.

The last president to be this unpopular was Jimmy Carter who also scored a 28 percent approval in 1979.

White House Threatens to Veto Hate Crimes Bill


The House of Representatives passed the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act Thursday, just hours after the White House said aides would recommend President Bush veto the measure.

The House voted 237 to 180. A parallel bill is working its way through the Senate.

The Shepard Act, also called the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act, would allow the Department of Justice to assist local authorities in investigating and prosecuting cases in which violence occurs against people based on their sexuality.

Federal hate crime legislation already covers people on the basis of race and religion.

Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) - the only openly gay man in the House - presided over the chamber as the final vote was taken.

"Today, we paid a sad but fitting tribute to victims of hate crimes like James Byrd, Matthew Shepherd and Michael Sandy," said Rep. Nadler (D-NY).

"No American should be threatened with violence because of who they are. Hate crimes attack not only the individual victim, but they send a violent message to an entire group of people. This hate crimes legislation takes critical steps to address violent bigotry and vicious acts of hatred. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to swiftly act to protect all Americans."

FBI statistics show that one in six hate crimes is motivated by the victim's sexual orientation.

"This is a historic day that moves all Americans closer to safety from the scourge of hate violence," said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese in a statement following the vote.

"Today, legislators sided with the 73 percent of the American people who support the expansion of hate crimes laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity."

But as the House was preparing to vote the White House issued a statement saying that if the measure passed both houses and goes to the President, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto it.

A statement from the Executive Office of the President said: "The Administration favors strong criminal penalties for violent crime, including crime based on personal characteristics, such as race, color, religion, or national origin."

"However, the Administration believes that H.R. 1592 is unnecessary and constitutionally questionable."

The White House statement said that state and local criminal laws already provide penalties for the crimes defined by the bill and "there has been no persuasive demonstration of any need to federalize such a potentially large range of violent crime enforcement."

The veto threat was immediately denounced by gay Democrats.

"By issuing a premature veto threat, President Bush fails to understand that he is not the sole decider regarding the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act," said Jo Wyrick, NSD Executive Director.

"Once again, the majority of American oppose the position of the President, and that is why we are urging the Senate Leadership to quickly move on this important legislation. We need Senate Democrats to step up before President Bush can step down"

Friday, May 04, 2007

Faith in America


The nondenominational group Faith in America today announced the launch of a five-city "Call to Courage" campaign to educate Americans about what it calls the misuse of religious teachings to discriminate and isolate LGBT people.

The campaign officially kicks off on May 6th in Ames, Iowa.

"Today marks an important day in the shared history of America’s religious and GLBT communities. For a long time we’ve stood on separate sides of an impasse" said Jimmy Creech, Executive Director of Faith In America.

"But through this education campaign we will begin a deep and sustained dialogue, to bridge the gaps of tolerance and understanding in this country." Creech served twenty-nine years as a minister in the United Methodist Church and is considered a leading expert and spokesperson on faith and the GLBT community.

The campaign will provide a forum for citizens to express their sentiments about religion-based bigotry and to discuss its harm on society and the LGBT community.

In 2006, Faith in America initiated a similar media campaign that found that participants were more accepting of 'homosexuals' after the six-month education campaign.

"We're asking Americans to be courageous and to join us in a stand against discrimination in all forms. As a nation, we have exhibited such courage in the past by rejecting the use of religion to sanction slavery and the subjugation of women," said Mitchell Gold, founder of Faith In America and a noted North Carolina furniture designer.

"This campaign is a first step toward putting an end to bigotry disguised as religious truth and creating a just world where everyone will be allowed to flourish in America without prejudice."

Learn more about Faith in America

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Conservative Hate Agenda

Socially conservative groups appear resigned to the likelihood the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act will be passed by Congress and are now turning their opposition to calling for President Bush to veto it.

The House is expected to vote on the bill on Thursday. The legislation would add crimes based on sexuality to the federal hate crime law.

Also called the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act it would allow the Department of Justice to assist local authorities in investigating and prosecuting cases in which violence occurs.

FBI statistics show that one in six hate crimes is motivated by the victim’s sexual orientation.

The American Family Association has sent an alert to thousands of its members calling on them to email and phone the White House to call for a veto.

"The Hate Crimes Act criminalizes a vast array of state and local acts and threatens religious leaders with criminal prosecution for their thoughts, beliefs, and statements," AFA claims - something supporters of the bill and LGBT civil rights groups dispute.

The hate crime bill passed the House in the last Congress but was dropped in the then Republican-controlled Senate last year.

Although the bill has bi-partisan support, with Democrats now in control of both houses in Congress it is seen as having a better chance of passage.

The legislation has the support of LGBT civil rights groups and has been endorsed by more than 210 law enforcement, civil rights, civic and religious organizations, including: the National Sheriffs' Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police, U.S. Conference of Mayors, and the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association.


Reacting to President Bush's veto of the Iraq supplemental bill, Speaker Nancy Pelosi noted this evening that Bush once believed it was important for a president to lay out a timetable:

The president wants a blank check. The Congress is not going to give it to him.

The president said, in his comments, he did not believe in timelines, and he spoke out very forcefully against them.

Yet in 1999, on June 5th, then-Governor Bush said, about President Clinton, "I think it’s important for the president to lay out a timetable as to how long they will be involved and when they would be withdrawn."

Despite his past statements, President Bush refuses to apply the same standard to his own activities. Standards - that's the issue.

If the president thinks that what is happening on the ground in Iraq now is progress, as he said in his comments tonight, then it's clear to see why we have a disagreement on policy with him. I agree with Leader Reid. We look forward to working with the president to find common ground, but there is great distance between us right now.