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What does John McCain’s loyal chief of staff – a man who apparently is in a long-term relationship with another man, and appears to be open about it to John McCain -- think about the fact that Sarah Palin devoutly worships at a church that promotes "converting" gays to heterosexuality? What, conversely, does she think of him? More importantly, what does John McCain think about all of this? And don’t we deserve some answers from the American media?

Over the past month I’ve been contacted by three different individuals (two of them members of the Log Cabin Republicans) claiming that McCain’s Senate chief of state, Mark Buse, is gay. None of these individuals would be quoted by name, though each described Buse as being rather "open" to those around him and to his family – in a "glass closet" rather than deeply undercover or trying to appear heterosexual.

Then I was contacted in recent weeks by 46-year-old Brian Davis, an Arizona resident, who told me about his intimate relationship with Mark Buse (confirmed by his mother, as well as by a long-time friend), and who decided he needed to tell the truth about Buse, on the record, in light of John McCain’s dramatic shift to the ideological religious right in this election and his choice of Sarah Palin, starlet of the evangelical movement, as a running mate. (Repeated calls to Mark Buse's office and calls and email to McCain's communications office in the Senate regarding this story were unreturned. Mike Rogers, the blogger and activist who revealed the truth about Senator Larry Craig and others in politics, today reports this same reality about Mark Buse that I report here, with separate, independent sourcing.)

If John McCain keeps this guy on as his chief of staff, does Sarah Palin still get to be raptured?

Honestly.

Who is the bigger hypocrite here?

Mark Buse, an openly gay man who is spending his life helping John McCain block important gay civil rights issues like marriage and adoption?

Or John McCain, who obviously has no problem with gay folks, but has adopted an anti-gay platform out of political expediency and a desire to court people like Sarah Palin, who think that if they just hate enough, they'll be Raptured into the love of Jesus when the End Times come.

Ridiculous.

Mark Buse is obviously a man of some ability.  It ain't nothing to get yourself a position as chief of staff to a powerful senator and presidential candidate.

A pity that he is wasting his talents fighting against his gay and Lesbian brothers and sisters.  And against everyone else who stands in solidarity for civil rights for all.

It's also a pity for us.

Because his efforts have contributed to the endless delays, damages and humiliations caused to gay and Lesbian Americans as we wait to achieve a full and equal status as citizens of the U.S.

Originally posted to bink on Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 11:52 AM PDT.

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