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Friday, August 8, 2008

Dino Rossi Likes His Problems Like He Likes His Men: Big & Hard

posted by on August 8 at 10:06 AM

I can’t take it anymore. This Dino Rossi commercial is on constant rotation on cable news and I’ve seen it seven or eight thousand times in the last two weeks:

My reaction to this ad? I’m almost ashamed to say—almost.

Dino Rossi is a huge fag. The hugest. My God, how could the same state Republican party that once nominated Ellen Craswell for governor—the party of god, guns, and anti-gays!—get away with nominating this deadly, winking, sniggering, snuggling, chromium-plated, scent-impregnated, luminous, quivering, giggling, fruit-flavoured, mincing, ice-covered heap of mother love?

Here’s how: Because they know Democrats won’t employ gay-baiting as a campaign tactic.

Gay-baiting and anti-gay smear campaigns are an old Republican standby. Karl Rove got George W. Bush’s ass elected governor of Texas—the first step on George’s very short walk to the White House—by conducting a whispering campaign against then-incumbent governor Ann Richards implying that she was a lesbian. Rush Limbaugh calls John Edwards “Breck Girl.” Ann Coulter calls John Edwards—currently embroiled in a love-child scandal—a faggot; she claims Bill Clinton—notorious womanizer—is secretly a gay man. Hillary Clinton is a dyke. Republicans run against “San Francisco values,”. The tactic dates back to Reagan’s attacks on hippies when he was governor of California. Says Digsby:

For forty years the Republicans have been winning elections by calling liberals “faggots” (and “dykes”) in one way or another. It’s what they do…. The underlying premise of the modern conservative movement is that the entire Democratic party consists of a bunch of fags and dykes who are both too effeminate and too masculine to properly lead the nation.

And they’re going to do it to Obama. Republicans are going to question his masculinity, feminize him, and insinuate that the man who married this woman is really a great big homo. Hell, they’re already doing it.

Now go back and watch that Dino Rossi ad again. Could the guy be any swishier? Isn’t his face just a little too expressive? Isn’t his voice just a little too soft? Is it just me, or is the man actually mincing? I’ll bet you there are two campaign aides just out of camera range holding onto Dino’s arms so that his wrists don’t float up into the shot and start flapping around. I don’t look or sound that gay with my boyfriend’s cock in my mouth. Let’s apply the ultimate test of male heterosexuality: Can you picture this man performing cunnilingus? I sure as hell can’t.

Another test: I asked the Stranger’s Kelly O to doctor this ad a bit—to add gay images and themes—to see if the ad still worked. I wanted to see if Dino was convincing as Washington state’s first openly-gay Republican nominee for governor. Does the ad still work? Hell, it’s seamless—or “theamless,” as Dino might put it. Check it out:

Yes, yes: the pink dildo in Dino’s hands at the Crypt is a little gratuitous. But the point isn’t that Dino likes sex toys big & pink. The point is this: Rossi makes an entirely plausible openly-gay candidate. And if Rossi were a Democrat the Republican attack machine would be after his suspiciously trim ass. I suppose it’s an open question as to whether Dino really is this swishy in real life or if it’s an act. The same Dino who’s running from the Republican label—listing his party affiliation as “GOP” instead of “Republican” to confuse voters—may be adopting fey ways to further confuse voters (“No way is that sissy a Republican…”). Or, heck, maybe Dino’s hoping to scoop up some votes from suburban soccer moms and sad old fag hags who are still upset about the cancellation of Will & Grace.

Whether Dino’s really swishy or he’s just playing gay on TV, Dino knows he can get away with it—and the state GOP knows they can get away with nominating this deadly, winking, sniggering, snuggling, chromium-plated, scent-impregnated, luminous, quivering, giggling, fruit-flavoured, mincing, ice-covered heap of mother love—because the state Democratic party would never stoop to gay-bait Dino because that would offend the gays and lesbians in the Democrat base.

A note to the Democrats: Go ahead and gay bait Dino Rossi. We won’t mind. It’ll actually be nice to see one of them getting gay-baited for a change. Because so long as the right is exploiting homophobia to elect anti-gay politicians, I don’t see why we shouldn’t use it—carefully, surgically, rarely—to defeat anti-gay politicians. Let’s grease up their petard and hoist one of them by it.

RSS icon Comments


First hint was the problems being "too big and too hard."

Obviously code.

Posted by yeah he's gay | August 8, 2008 10:14 AM

Eh. He needs to lose some weight and get a new face. He works in some pictures, but for the most part: vomit city.

Posted by Mr. Poe | August 8, 2008 10:16 AM

You should do what I do, Dan.

Don't watch television.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | August 8, 2008 10:16 AM

Yes bigots, do make fun of Rossi for being/or not being gay, with Dan's approval. In the future, when Savage rails about similar attacks on gays, don't forget to point out he's an advocate of it.

Posted by Democrat | August 8, 2008 10:21 AM

Nothing is too big or too hard for Dino Rossi.

Posted by Sirkowski | August 8, 2008 10:25 AM

How quaint. Savage pretending to be hip and edgy again.

Posted by Don Ward | August 8, 2008 10:29 AM

@4: It's only okay when you're attacking someone who is a homophobic hypocrite. It's called the "Ted Haggard Clause" or the "Larry Craig Exception."

@6: Dan Savage is hip and edgy!

Posted by jrrrl | August 8, 2008 10:33 AM

While it's the only instance of it that I know of, Democrats have gay baited their Republican opponents before. And I guess it worked.

Posted by spencer | August 8, 2008 10:40 AM

Gee Mr. Savage you sure took a long time to say absolutely nothing important! Why don’t you attack Mr. Rossi on issues? And if you think I am homophobic check out my website.

Posted by Leslie Bloss | August 8, 2008 10:41 AM

I don't like it. This could be a Coup Fourré for Rossi.

Posted by Greg | August 8, 2008 10:45 AM

Dan, you're doing it again.

If a behavior is wrong when perpetrated against one group of people, it is still wrong when perpetrated against another group. Even if the perpetrator finds it hilarious or somehow poetic.

Perspective, Dan. I don't know why, but I used to think you had it. You're turning bitter in middle age. It's not becoming.

Posted by Matthew | August 8, 2008 10:45 AM

@7: So gay baiting is ok some of the time. Bigots will love to hear that. And did you actually read the story you link to? Nothing in there proves (yes, implies, insinuates and suggests, as most shallow Stranger reporting does) Rossi's a hypocrite. But apparently that's enough for you and Dan. Me, I'd like proof - some, even a tiny bit - that I wasn't myself acting like a hetrosexual hypocrite.

Posted by Democrat | August 8, 2008 10:47 AM

Kelly O's commercial is awesome. I love the dance music and rainbow background at the end. Sweet.

Posted by Balt-O-Matt | August 8, 2008 10:48 AM

Did I miss that session at the water cooler? Are there really rumors about Dino, or is Dan just basing this on appearance?

Posted by michael strangeways | August 8, 2008 10:49 AM

I do not like or care or actually even listened to any of his policies. Actually none of candidates for that matter but Dino Rossi I'd hit it.

Posted by cannot think of anything creative | August 8, 2008 10:50 AM

@8, don't forget Edwards and Kerry repeatedly bringing up Cheney's love for his gay daughter.

Posted by Eric F | August 8, 2008 10:54 AM


I think Democrats know a thing or two about gay-baiting:

Posted by minderbender | August 8, 2008 10:57 AM

I'm with you in disgust at that litany of Republican attacks, which are disgusting and an insult to ordinary decency as well as to gays, but I can't follow you to gay-bait Rossi. Rossi's problem isn't his mincy face or fruit flavors, it's his contempt for common sense, good government and ultimately the voters.

Posted by Fnarf | August 8, 2008 10:58 AM

Is it just me or does he look a little like John C. Reilly? I don't know what that means, but I think it has to do with the nose forehead.

Posted by Courtney Vester | August 8, 2008 10:59 AM

@ 12

Sense of humor much?

Ever read satire? Rossi is a family.

BTW - Dino, call me.

-Sen. Larry Craig

Posted by Larry Craig | August 8, 2008 11:00 AM

@16, I see what you mean, but that was a little different. That wasn't a baseless insinuation based on any lesbian stereotypes Mary Cheney happened to fit. It was the truth. Of course Kerry and Edwards were taking advantage of it, but they were using the truth as a weapon against those make gays out to be dangerous. And of course, since they're on my side, they get a little more leeway with me.

Posted by spencer | August 8, 2008 11:04 AM

What's this "GOP" nonsense? There's no "GOP" party, that's a nickname. He's a Republican.

Posted by rain | August 8, 2008 11:05 AM

Reasons for selecting Dino:

1. Just like GWB, we'd have a gay governor in the closet.

2. Just like GWB, he would destroy our state economy and loot it for his comrades in the GOP Party Elite.

3. He brings the crazy to Republicrat.

Posted by Will in Seattle | August 8, 2008 11:07 AM

Is it not wrong to allege things without proof?

Posted by PC | August 8, 2008 11:08 AM

Too many adjectives; did not read

Posted by leek | August 8, 2008 11:10 AM

There are many reasons to mock Dino, but being sorta kinda swishy isn't one of them.

I'm not a fan of this idea, and I think there is a good chance it will backfire on you some time in the future.

Unless, of course, he actually is a closet homo, a la Larry Craig. Then trash him all you want for being a fucking hypocrite. But lets have a little more evidence than a possible swish.

Posted by Reverse Polarity | August 8, 2008 11:17 AM

LOL at the descriptions in paragraph 2. I believe that passage originally referred to Liberace?

However, you're wrong to attribute gender-baiting specifically to *Republicans*. It is a standard trope of the mainstream press corps. Maureen Dowd, for example, has called Obama "Scarlett O'Hara," "Obambi," "a Hollywood starlet," and "Legally Blonde" and I think she, not Limbaugh, actually originated "Breck Girl" for Edwards. She also said Al Gore is "so feminized he's practically lactating" and imagined him singing "I Feel Pretty" to himself in the mirror. Not to mention Hillary Clinton!

Posted by David | August 8, 2008 11:18 AM

This post is as befuddled and reactionary as a Katy Perry song.

Posted by chicagogaydude | August 8, 2008 11:26 AM

So what I'm taking from this is that homophobia is now okay, when deployed for politically expedient purposes?

Let me turn that over in my brain some and get back to you.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | August 8, 2008 11:41 AM

Too pudgy; if he were really gay he should try to lose some weight.

Posted by Non | August 8, 2008 11:57 AM

There aren't enough graduate schools in Clinical Psych in the nation to crank out enough Cognitive-Behavior Psychs to fully engage Savage's cognitive distortions. What a lightweight.

Posted by Bob | August 8, 2008 12:03 PM

@20 Indeed. Your comments left me rollin' in the aisle.

To paraphrase L. Bentsen, I know satire and let me tell you No. 20, you're no satirist.

Posted by Democrat | August 8, 2008 12:08 PM

@24 - not when they run for public office, apparently.

Posted by Will in Seattle | August 8, 2008 12:18 PM

I googled "Who is Valentino Rossi dating?" and all I can say is, I wish I was gay like that.

Plus, if you had 10 Valentino Rossis, they could easily take over Capitol Hill.

Posted by elenchos | August 8, 2008 12:24 PM

SO... We should not vote for anyone that acts gay. Because they might be gay. And thats bad. Understood. Duly noted.

Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me | August 8, 2008 12:36 PM

Notice how he never says, "Republican?" That word never shows up in his commercials. It's not in the Voter's Pamphlet. Just GOP. Why is that, I wonder?

Posted by sparroweater | August 8, 2008 12:56 PM

Seeking attention, Dan may have cost Gregoire her election bid.

Let's hope media outside Seattle doesn't pick this trash up.

By the way, I thought the whole point of sexual liberation is WHO THE HELL CARES?

And Dan, as the sexual matters expert, does not know good looking men in their younger days all cross the line. No big deal.

The piece is slander, even in a political race.

Posted by Pinko Commie Fag | August 8, 2008 12:59 PM

Seems like your typically effiminate straight Seattle-ish man to me. Gay shadows, Dan. Gay shadows.

Posted by Bubbles | August 8, 2008 1:07 PM

Okay, I'm back.

This is still nonsensical and asinine.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | August 8, 2008 1:38 PM

You don't need the Democrats to gay bait, the whispering campaign can start here a la Santorum.

Posted by D. | August 8, 2008 4:32 PM

I still think he looks like that creeper from the Enzyte commercials. If I wasn't already against him for his views on women's rights, I'd be against him for consistently creeping me out.

Posted by Lobot | August 8, 2008 6:22 PM

Everyone looks silly in political commercials. The Democrats shouldn't gay bait---ever heard of "taking the high road"?

Posted by Damien | August 8, 2008 7:15 PM

No manly eyebrows, looks waxed

Posted by salsamanca | August 9, 2008 11:36 PM

It's about time that someone other than a welfare giving bleeding heart liberal had a chance to win in this fag loving state. Washington is an embarrassment to the country and should lock up 99% of you left-wing loons who call King County home.

Posted by Robert | August 12, 2008 11:53 AM

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