Elizabeth Edwards to Appear at Gay Pride event

The SFgate reports:

Elizabeth Edwards’ scheduled appearance Sunday at a major San Francisco Gay Pride event represents a first for a major presidential candidate or spouse — one that activists said reflects the growing clout of gay and lesbians as voters and their continued move into the political mainstream.

Elizabeth Edwards, the wife of Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards, is scheduled to speak Sunday morning at the Alice B. Toklas Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Democratic Club breakfast at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel. Organizers say it marks the highest level of presidential campaigning at the annual Gay Pride Parade.

“It certainly is another barrier falling,” said author and gay activist David Mixner, a Clinton administration adviser who backs Edwards in the 2008 race.

“There’s been a taboo on any (candidate)-related Gay Pride events,” he said, with major presidential hopefuls steering away because the event has been viewed largely in the mainstream media as a no-holds-barred celebration of the gay lifestyle.

But Mixner — whom Newsweek once called “the most powerful gay man in America” — said Democratic politicians particularly are realizing that “just like straights at Mardi Gras, there’s a wide range of different events, from picnics and political clubs to the parade,” many of them family-oriented and many stocked with potential voters.

“The myth of what Pride is will be exploded … and that taboo will now be removed,” he said. “And I can’t think of a better person to do it than Elizabeth Edwards. She won’t let people tell her where she can go and who she can talk to.”

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