Lynne V. Cheney, wife of Vice President Cheney, accused John F. Kerry on Wednesday night of "a cheap and tawdry political trick" and said he "is not a good man" after he brought up their daughter's homosexuality at the final presidential debate.
Mary Cheney, one of the vice president's two daughters and an official of the Bush-Cheney campaign, has been open about her lesbian status. The candidates were asked if they believe homosexuality is a choice, and President Bush did not mention Mary Cheney. Then Kerry said, "If you were to talk to Dick Cheney's daughter, who is a lesbian, she would tell you that she's being who she was, she's being who she was born as."
Lynne Cheney issued her post-debate rebuke to a cheering crowd outside Pittsburgh. "The only thing I can conclude is he is not a good man. I'm speaking as a mom," she said. "What a cheap and tawdry political trick."
Steven Fisher, communications director of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay and lesbian political organization, said Kerry "was speaking to millions of American families who, like the Cheneys, have gay friends and family members."
Kerry's running mate, Sen. John Edwards (N.C.), also made a reference to the sexual orientation of Cheney's daughter, during the vice presidential debates, and Republicans complained that it was an underhanded way of trying to hurt the Bush-Cheney ticket with religious conservatives.