Ketner apologizes for ‘outing’ S.C. Republicans

Says she won't run again in 2010 Updated

south carolina gayOriginally published: June 3, 2009, 1:04 p.m.
Updated: June 9, 2009, 6:45 a.m.

Linda Ketner, an openly lesbian 2008 South Carolina Democratic candidate for Congress, issued an apology on Friday, June 5, for comments she made claiming three Palmetto State Republicans were closeted gays.

The bombshell statements were made in a FireDogLake interview on June 1.

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“We have more gay people serving in South Carolina than probably in anyplace in the United States; they’re just not out of the closet,” she told blogger Howie Klein. “We have an awful lot of people in the closet — Lindsey Graham, Glenn McConnell who’s our Senate president pro tem, our Lt Governor [André Bauer].”

Later in the comment section of the website, Ketner clarified her remarks, “By the way, in Howie’s intro, he quoted me as saying several members of state and U.S. government were gay,” she said. “I don’t know that for sure having never been intimate with any of them. Those are the rumors.”

On June 5, Ketner wrote on her blog: “I’ve always been resolute about never outing anyone, believing strongly that every person gets to decide when or if he or she comes out. I let myself and others down in a recent off-the-record chat with a reporter. I obviously don’t have knowledge of the sexual orientation of any individuals mentioned. What I do have is respect and appreciation for their service to this state.”

She added, “My sincerest apologies to any of you rightfully upset with me.”

Graham, McConnell and Bauer have all been the subject of rumors claiming they are gay. Those rumors have never been confirmed and the three have either denied it or stayed silent. All three are single. In 2002, a divorce action between Bauer and his wife allegedly accused the official of having an affair with another man. No documents ever surfaced to confirm that rumor.

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Q-Notes contacted the offices of each of the elected officials. Messages left for spokespeople in the morning had yet to be returned by afternoon.

Blogger and activist Michael Rogers, who has worked for years outing anti-gay, closeted politicians, said individuals should be careful making accusations without certainty or proof.

“As always, I support the reporting on closeted, anti-gay politicians who work against the interest of the gay community,” he told Q-Notes. “I am careful to only report on cases of which I have 100 percent confidence and encourage others to not use rumors, whether longstanding or recent, as a basis for outing.”

Rogers, whose work is showcased in the 2009 film “Outrage,” said South Carolinians should do the appropriate research into allegedly closeted politicians’ records and actions and have all the facts before going public with any evidence.

Ketner’s race against Brown was historic. If successful, she would have been the state’s first openly gay or lesbian elected official, along with Charleston’s Nick Shalosky, who won a seat on a constituent school board through a write-in candidacy. Ketner lost her race 52 percent to 48 percent. She was being encouraged to try again in 2010, but announced in a June 8 email to supporters that she would not be running again for the First Congressional District seat. In the email, Ketner said she’d continue to work to improve South Carolina and was considering a 2012 run for some other office.

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Posted by Matt Comer

Matt Comer is a staff writer for QNotes. He previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015.

12 Replies to “Ketner apologizes for ‘outing’ S.C. Republicans”

  1. Jim Pritchard June 3, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    I’m shocked, absolutely shocked that there’s buggery going on with our state GOP

  2. While I supported Linda Ketner and still wish that she had put that pompous jackass out of office, this news is as old as the hills.
    I wonder if anyone will begin an investigation of Lindsay for violation of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. Hypocrisy #1.
    Glenn McConnell has been dressing up and running around in stage make-up trying to defend his racist little buddies. I guess he wishes he had been in an army that didn’t have a ‘no gays’ policy. Hypocrisy #2.
    Andre has been struggling with his identity for so long from the bottom of a bottle that he now has a chauffeur running him around to avoid anymore brushes with the law. Hypocrisy #3.

  3. If the above allegations are true, and I have no evidence to support that allegation – the Hippocrates who are gay and constantly vote against gay rights and disparage gays should all be “outed” so that we can end the double-standard that has been a constant on the “hill.”

    I don’t give a flying flip whether a Congressman is gay, however, when that gay Congressman refuses to come out of the closet and punish other gays is the height of hypocrisy. This hypocrisy, whether is is about gays or other activities that Congress regularly engages in (drugs, prostitutes, and who knows what else.) is a serious issue that needs to be rectified.

    Any Congressman that is doing one thing while condemning others for the same behavior is an insult to the American people – and in this mater, it’s time for ALL of them to be “outed” so they can be recognized for the hypocrites they are, and if they constantly disparage other individuals for engaging in acts they conduct themselves – should be impeached as the liars and con men they are.

  4. Hay nitwhits, Bauer has never been married or even so much as engaged.

  5. I don’t think anybody really thinks Bauer’s gay. Have you seen his girlfriend!?!?

  6. You mean have I seen Bauer’s beard? Sen. Graham is merely obvious, whereas others, perhaps Bauer, are ‘playing’ the public so as to get to the power, money, and crony-directed influence peddling. In SC it always works(cf, Campbell, Thurmond. We always were suckers for a pretty–well, OK, Jeff Gordon-ish kinda cute, face, and SC men are the sissiest in the nation. Most of these guys are so repulsive that their trucks have to serve as the ‘beard’, however. Snuff box in the back pocket–bottom.

  7. No, I did not mean Have you seen Bauer’s beard?

    I meant, Have you seen Bauer’s girlfriend?

    Excuse me for not making the question clear.

    What I don’t get is that some of the same people that have been trying to paint him as gay have also tried to smear him for having a string of beautiful girlfriends.

  8. Sam,

    A “beard” is a woman who goes out with a gay man to cover up the fact that he’s gay.

  9. A flaming gay make-up artist is good friends with Andre Bauer. He has shown me many text messages of their text exchanges. I suspect that Andre probably is gay from the text messages I saw.

  10. Don’t know these creeps, but I agree. Out all these stinking republicans who use homophobic hatred to try and hide their need for lube.

    It is one thing to be in the closet, eg the man who told me his father (ill) would simply die if he was told his son was gay. I understand.

    But when they are actively homophobic, sri – to hell with them.

    BTW, coming later in the year is the movie Outrage 2009. It is in some specialty theatres now (I just missed seeing it here in DC. And it is all about the hidden gays on capitol hill. Dont know if they are named, but it is the warning shot.

    BTW, the leader of the anti- gays in Md is a state rep Don Dwyer. Who was spotted some years ago dancing half naked in the Atlantis bar in Balt, a gay bar at the time.

    And so funny – I knew the kid at work who was fucking this ‘good christian’s’ daughter a couple years ago.

  11. I am from SC. I do not know any of the 3 politicians personally so I won’t comment on what I think about them. However, if a closeted politician votes for any legislation that keeps gay & lesbians from having equal rights, there should be no hesitation to out them. Linda Ketner is great! And Mike Rogers, you are the greatest! Keep givin um hell Mike!!!

  12. The closet is just a variant of segregation. Brought to you by churches who say they worship God and Jesus, but truly worship Satan himself.

    Out ALL the fuckers. Nothing will destroy the haters more, then people discovering that people they know and respect are gay.

    It is as simple as that. Not about words, but about emotions.

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