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Update: 8 p.m.
Today, Vincent Orange formally announced he will be running for D.C. Council Chair. From the D.C. Wire:
“Orange said chairman Vincent C. Gray’s decision to run for mayor has created a leadership void and that he has the experience to fill it. He also questioned how his Democratic rival, at-large council member Kwame R. Brown, would be able to work with Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, with whom he has clashed.”
A lot has changed since Orange left the D.C. Council: the mayor’s school takeover, the rise of the Scary-Troll known as Peter Nickles, and the passage of the same-sex marriage bill. It’s that last change that may haunt Orange as he heads back out on the campaign trail.
When Orange ran his losing campaign for mayor in 2006, he came out against gay marriage. In an interview he gave with Fox-5, cited in a Metro Weekly piece, Orange was very clear about where he stood:
”I am the only one [of the mayoral candidates] that is opposed to same-sex marriage. The other four, they say they believe in God, they go to church, but they’re also for same-sex marriage…. I don’t think they’re morally fit to run this city.”
WaPo had more from Orange on the subject: “If you believe in God, the Bible says be fruitful and multiply,” he said. “I’m saying same-sex marriage is not condoned by the Bible.”
Linda Greene, Orange’s spokesperson, says that his position has changed—-he is now in favor of same-sex marriage. Orange is expected to call City Desk with further comment. We will add his comments as soon as we get him on the phone
Update 8 p.m.: Orange released a statement on gay marriage:
“My record on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender affairs has been well documented. During my tenure on the DC Council and as Chairman of the Committee on Government Affairs, I championed along with DC Councilmember Jim Graham Bill 16-235, the Office of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs Act of 2005. This Bill was in honor of my good friend Wanda R. Alston and to permanently establish the office without fear of it being abolished by subsequent administrations.
Councilmember Jim Graham and I also introduced the “District of Columbia Human Rights Act Clarification Act of 2005” to amend the District of Columbia Human Rights Act of 1977 to add “gender identity or expression” to the list of already enumerated classes protected by current District law. This Act was important because it clarified that discrimination against transgender and gender variant people is illegal in the District of Columbia.
Early in my tenure with Pepco commencing in 2007, Rick Rosendall, I believe, brought to my attention during DC Council hearings that Pepco did not provide benefits to domestic partners or civil unions. I immediately had this change and benefits were provided.
My record is clear, I stand for positive deeds, scholarship and love for all persons, genders and sexual preferences.
The District of Columbia recently passed same-sex marriage legislation. As the Democratic National Committeeman, I supported this legislation and voted in favor of the resolution passed by the DC Democratic State Committee. In fact, I challenged anyone to produce any legislation addressing civil rights where I opposed it.
In 2006, I did say that I believed that marriage is between a man and a woman. In 2010, I supported the same-sex legislation and as stated above voted in favor of the resolution passed by the DC Democratic State Committee.
We have come a long way in the journey of life. Today, I stand on the right side of history.”