‘…What’s the number one way I piss off Donald Trump and the Republicans?’ said Rich Madaleno before he kissed his same-sex husband Mark Hodge in a campaign ad spot, adding ‘Take that Trump!’ Photo Credit: screenshot from YouTube video

Campaign ad features historic same-sex kiss

WASHINGTON, D.C. —  A new campaign ad for Maryland gubernatorial candidate Richard Madaleno, which focuses on his record of progressive accomplishments for the state, ends with him kissing his husband Mark Hodge on the front lawn of his home. According to the LGBTQ Victory Fund, it was the first political ad in American history to feature a kiss between a candidate and a same-sex spouse. The groundbreaking ad ran on the Fox News show “Fox & Friends” in the Washington area on June 7.

“At a time when the White House and other anti-LGBTQ politicians are attempting to erase our visibility and rollback our rights, Rich Madaleno is boldly stating he’s proud of his family and will fight for all Marylanders if elected,” said Mayor Annise Parker, president & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund. “Not long ago, out LGBTQ people were unable to run for statewide offices such as governor, but voters now recognize there is an authenticity to LGBTQ leaders rarely found in today’s politicians. Rich is on-track to win the Democratic primary because of that authenticity, his deep roots in the state, and his 15 years of legislative experience. And it is great to see him share his love for Mark and the kids with voters too — especially in a political ad airing during the president’s favorite television show.”

The 30-second ad emphasized Madaleno’s work as a state senator — standing up to the Trump agenda, defending Planned Parenthood and passing a statewide assault weapons ban. It also highlights his support for addressing the challenges faced by underserved communities.

“At a time when political attacks by Trump and other Republicans are fueling so much hatred and division, we need to stand up for the people we love and to continue to confront harassment and discrimination against women, African-Americans, immigrants, LGBT couples and so many more,” said Madaleno. “Having led the charge for marriage equality, achieving true equality and justice for all Marylanders will be my priority as Governor. June is LGBT Pride Month, and I couldn’t think of a better time to release this ad. I am proud of my family, proud of my record of standing up for our progressive values and proud to be unflinching in standing up against hate. Love does truly trump hate.”

Madaleno is a Victory Fund-endorsed Game Changer candidate. Maryland’s primary will be June 26. The ad can be viewed at youtu.be/cc9ovvth3sY.

info: victoryfund.org.

Cohen hits Israel Pride scene

Tel Aviv Pride 2018 International Ambassador
Andy Cohen at the Pride parade and festivities
in Tel Aviv, Israel.

TEL AVIV, Israel — A record-breaking quarter of a million individuals from across the globe marched in the largest Pride parade in the Middle East for Tel Aviv Pride 2018 held earlier in June.

Bravo host and producer Andy Cohen was on hand as its international ambassador. Cohen shared, “Celebrating Pride in Tel Aviv is a beautiful celebration of gay rights and visibility in a region where many of the neighbors cannot live as their true selves or be who they were born to be, which makes it all the more special for this massive coming together in support of equality to be taking place in Tel Aviv.”

This year’s parade marked 20 years from the city’s first Pride parade and payed tribute to the pioneering activists who played a key-role in promoting LGBTQ rights and visibility in Israel, organizers said. The parade was briefly stalled after hundreds of pro-Palestinian protesters interrupted the event. The group was protesting recent violent skirmishes on the Israeli/Palestinian border, which have resulted in over 100 deaths.

info: bit.ly/2LUJte4. mww.com.

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.