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Erie PA LGBT Political Forum. Guest Post

10/27/2008

Dare To Dream is pleased to have a “Guest Post” from Michael Mahler on a GLBT political event that was held this weekend in Erie Pennsylvania. Mike is the co-editor for Erie Gay News, and also web master for Erie Gay News.

A link to his personal blog is found in Dare To Dream’s “blogroll” in which he calls himself “just your basic openly gay, out of the broom closet Pagan computer programmer:)”

“On Sunday, the Erie Gay Business Alliance held a candidate forum for US Presidential, US Congressional PA-3, PA State Senate District 49 and PA State House for districts that are in Erie County. We had about 60 people or so attend. In terms of candidates for Federal office, we had Jamie Citron, who is the Deputy LGBT Outreach coordinator for the Obama/Biden campaign, all 3 candidates for US Congress PA-3 – Kathy Dahlkemper (D), a representative for Phil English (R-Incumbent) and Steve Porter (I). For Pennsylvania state candidates, we had Cindy Purvis (D) for PA State Senate District 49, Jason Owen (R ) for PA State House District 3, and Rick Mitchell (D) for PA State House District 4. All of the PA state candidates who attended are the non-incumbents.

It went fairly well. Local ABC news affiliate WJET TV 24 was there and ran a story on the 11 PM news broadcast. I happened to be in the Erie chat room at gay.com when it aired, and someone mentioned the broadcast. It was slightly surreal to mention that I was the person that they were watching on TV. I have been doing local media for about 16 1/2 years now, so it is pretty old hat.

In addition to the forum that the Erie Gay Business Alliance held, Erie Gay News also printed a Voters Guide in the most recent issue, which is online. Deb Spilko, co-editor for Erie Gay News, also compiled a list of other sites that you can also read on line.

I really thought that the Jamie Citron did a great job for Obama, and Kathy Dahllkemper gave a very good speech as well. I was happy that we had the turnout that we did. At first, it was looking light, and I was panicking that folks were going to not show up. (Have I mentioned that I tend to be neurotic?)

So, I am taking Election Day off to be a poll watcher, and I am hoping that everyone votes! This is so important, and it only takes maybe 15 minutes for most of us for something that will influence us for years, if not decades.”

Mike Mahler

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