Dan McKee overstates his support for marriage equality in campaign ad, say advocates

Daniel McKee

In response to an ad released by incumbent Rhode Island Lieutenant Governor Daniel McKee claiming early leadership on marriage equality, leaders of Rhode Island’s LGBTQ community condemned the lieutenant governor for taking credit for a fight they say he was absent from until the very end.

“I was involved in helping lead the fight for marriage equality in our state over decades of activism and organizing,” said Lauren Nocera, a leader in the LGBTQ community and longtime marriage equality activist. “From 1998 until 2013, I never saw Dan McKee take action – not until our bill was already on the verge of passing and it was politically safe to do so. It was disappointing to see McKee claiming credit for our fight in his campaign commercial. That’s not what leaders do.”

Aaron Regunberg has actually shown up for our community,” added Wendy Becker, a decades-long advocate on LGBTQ issues. “Lieutenant Governor Dan McKee was entirely absent from our fight to ban conversion therapy, and our advocacy for respect in death for transgender people – fights that Aaron actively supported. And Aaron was knocking on doors and making phone calls for marriage equality years before McKee finally took action, just prior to the marriage bill being signed into law. Politicians can claim credit for our work, but we know Aaron is the leader who has actually been there for us.”

[From a press release via the Aaron Regunberg campaign.]

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1 Comment

  1. I was involved in the marriage equality advocacy starting in 2005. I was at every senate judiciary hearing on it over the years (I remember the dismal late nights). I remember several state senators and representatives testifying in support, and I remember then-Governor Chafee testifying in support. I don’t remember Dan McKee ever testifying. Yeah, he issued a press release but as this article notes that was only as we were near the finish line. Look at the video, the “5 mayors push to legalize…” article was from March 2013 and marriage equality passed and became law on May 2, 2013. that hardly makes McKee “one of the first” to speak out on marriage equality.

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