Democratic Candidates Agree to 'Gay' Debate

Bigger Risk Than It Seems

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Top Democratic candidates have agreed to paricipate in a "gay" debate.

For the first time the leading candidates for the presidency will hold a televised debate devoted solely to LGBT issues. The one-hour event will be held on August 9 and broadcast on gay network LOGO at 9:00 pm ET (6:00 pm ET) and through live streaming video at

Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards have confirmed.

From a marketing point of view, this is a risky move for the candidates. And it's not just that they may alienate those Democrats, such as socially conservative African Americans, who are not so gay-friendly. Or that they'll have to worry about centrist voters not keen to take on the subject. Or that they'll motivate the supposedly rabid Religious Right during the general election.

They'll also have to worry about their own less-than-impressive records. If the event is unscripted and raw, all three could face more than a few awkward moments. Both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have been on the record as being opposed to gay marriage (or, more accurately, stating that marriage should be between a man and a woman). And John Edwards might have some explaining to do about his gay-baiting of Dick Cheney during the VP debates last time around -- and his comments in the recent Bob Shrum book about being uncomfortable around "those people."