the lgbtq community’s news source
NOVEMBER 20, 2009
By KEVIN NAFF
Don’t judge us too harshly — the edition of DC Agendayou’re holding is a modest,early iteration of what wehope to achieve in the wakeof Washington Blade’s sud-den closing this week.The news that parent com-pany Window Media was shut-tering and liquidating itsnewspapers came as a shock tothe staff, some of whom de-voted their careers to the paperthat became an institution. We were ushered out the doors of our offices with no severance,canceled paychecks and morequestions than answers about why this was allowed to happen.The former staff of the Washington Blade remainsunited and DC Agenda repre-sents our effort at continuingthe important mission and work of the Blade. It will grow and evolve to include a muchlarger and more diverse groupof voices. But the core of the Washington Blade’s work re-mains unchanged. We willcover Congress, the WhiteHouse, the LGBT rights move-ment, the D.C. marriage fight,local hate crimes and other po-litical issues important to theLGBT residents of the city.It’s been a tough week forus, but we are buoyed by theoutpouring of support frompeople all over the city and be-yond. We welcome and needyour help and will respond toeach offer as soon as possible.Thank you to all who havepledged to stick with us, espe-cially our advertisers. Pleasevisit savetheblade.com for up-dated information on DC Agenda or to make a gift tosupport the new venture.The strength of the Wash-ington Blade did not lie in itsbrand name — it came fromthe spirit of those who worked passionately to serveand inform our community.Those people are still here.Our work continues.
RLYNNE J. BROWNEDITORIALE
orJOEY DiGUGLIELMOSr. New
orREBECCA ARMENDARIZSALES & ADMINISTRATIONAd Oper
s ManagerJEANNI CENTOFANTISr. Acct
ieds ManagerDANIELLE KINGDi
orROBBIE BARNETTEDITORIAL POSITIONSof DC Agenda are expressed ineditorials and in editors’ notesas determined by the paper’seditors. Other opinions are those of the writers and do not necessarilyrepresent the opinion ofDC Agenda or its staff.© 2009, TWB EmployeeAcquisition, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the staff
We are deeply grateful for theoutpouring of community supportand interest following this week’sclosing of the Washington Blade.If you would like to be part of thisnew venture, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.comAnd, if you would like to contributefinancially, you can do so atSaveTheBlade.com. The staff iscurrently working on a volunteerbasis; financial support will beused to cover printing, distribution,equipment and other related costs.Thank you for supporting us.Sincerely,DC Agenda staff
Members of the DC Agenda staff gathered with local supportersWednesday night at Hard Rock Café. (Photo by Joe Tresh)
Our mission continues
By CHRIS JOHNSON
A U.S. House committee Wednesday approved legisla-tion that would benefit thepartners of LGBT federal workers after beating back amendments that inflamedpassions among lawmakers.The House Oversight &Government Reform Com-mittee reported out the legisla-tion, known as the DomesticPartnership Benefits & Obli-gations Act, 23-12.The legislation, H.R.2517, would make availableto the same-sex partners of LGBT federal workers bene-fits afforded the spouses of straight employees, includinghealth and pension benefits.Now that the committeehas approved the legislation, it will proceed to a House floorvote after the House RulesCommittee has set guidelinesfor debate on the legislation.Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D- Wis.) the only out lesbian inCongress and sponsor of theHouse bill, told the Agenda shehopes a floor vote would takeplace after lawmakers returnfrom Thanksgiving recess. Asked whether there areenough votes in the House topass the legislation, Baldwinreplied, “Our vote countinghas been going very well andI think we will.”But during the markup,Republican lawmakers intro-duced amendments on arange of contentious issues,including same-sex marriageand illegal immigration.Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio)put forth an amendment that would have mandated noth-ing in the legislation would be“considered to modify, super-sede, or otherwise affect theDefense of Marriage Act.”The amendment, whichended up failing 12-22, inspiredire over bringing the issue of marriage into the debate as wellas controversy over bringing what some called a “last-minuteamendment” to the committee.Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) rebuked the intro-duction of the measure, call-ing it “totally superfluous”and “absolutely an effort toplay up people’s prejudice.” Another amendment putforth by Rep. Brian Bilbray (R-Calif.), which failed 15-20, would have required partners tobe screened through the E-Ver-ify program under immigrationlaw to ensure they are not illegalimmigrants and have a lawfulpresence in the United States.The measure riled Kennedy, who accused its supporters of bringing it up to “play on big-otry.” He suggested Republi-can lawmakers were makingpeople of color, immigrantsand others targets of bigotry inthe legislation.
Story continues atDCAgenda.com.
(D-Wis.)(Photo by Michael Key)
House panel approves DP benefits bill