Allies of Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback Viciously Attack LGBT Rights As Marriage Ruling Nears
As Kansas Republican Gov. Sam Brownback is behind in some re-election polls, allies of one of the nation’s most rightwing governors are circulating a vicious anti-LGBT flyer urging evangelical Kansans to stand with Brownback in the escalating courtroom fight over legalizing same-sex marriage.
The hate-filled flyer, which has a New Hampshire telephone number at the bottom, urges Kansans to call the governor’s office and support Brownback’s ongoing stance to fight federal court decisions that are expected any day now to order local officials to resume issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
The flyer all-but calls for violence against LGBT individuals, saying, “If it is the nature of a person to be gay, it is in their nature to be extinct.”
It purports to quote “a homosexual declaration of war read in the California House of Representatives” that states, “We will sodomize your children. All churches who condemn us will be closed. The family unit will be eliminated. Any man contaminated with heterosexual lust will automatically be barred from any position of influence.”
It is not unusual for vicious political messages to emerge at the end of a campaign, where the public and press do not have time to identify the messengers. However, the timing of the flyer also comes as Kansas’ state constitutional ban on same-sex marriage is likely to be struck down in federal court—which will bring the issue into the governor’s race.
In early October, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld same-sex marriage rulings from the same federal appeals court that oversees Kansas. That prompted the ACLU to file a suit in that federal circuit to force the state to issue same-sex marriage licenses.
On Friday, the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas held a telephone conference in that suit with lawyers for both sides—the ACLU and Kansas’ Attorney General. That judge ordered final briefs to be filed by Monday afternoon. That is likely to produce a ruling in the final phase of the governor’s race, where the Democratic challenger, state Rep. Paul Davis, has based his message on reversing Brownback’s extremism—starting with his fiscally irresponsible tax cuts.
Non-partisan state budget analysts have projected that Brownback's cuts will create a billion dollar state deficit within five years.
On Friday, the Kansas City Star reported that Davis was ahead of Brownback, 52 percent to 45 percent, in a poll by Rasmussen Reports, a firm known for a pro-Republican bias. Other tracking polls that have not been released publicly show a tighter race.
“Fifty-eight percent of voters thought Kansas was worse off today than it was four years ago when Brownback took office,” the Star said. “Most Kansans don’t trust Brownback with taxes, another bad bellwether given that income tax cuts are his seminal achievement during his first term in office.”
The impact of the anti-LGBT flyer supporting Brownback is hard to assess. While it may provoke religious conservatives to vote, it also may remind moderate Kansans that Brownback’s record as an extremist is not contained to cutting taxes, defunding public education, and gutting needed safety net programs.