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Carl Paladino’s apology over anti-gay remarks exploits the Democrats’ own iffy positions

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Carl Paladino is the GOP's Tea Party-affiliated nominee for governor of New York, and he's quite the charmer: whether he's sending incredibly racist "joke" emails or assuring a group of voters he wouldn't want gays to be teachers because, "There is nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual," he's just always great.

Those latter remarks, though, got him in to a bit more trouble than he expected. While he seemed very clear with his words in front of the Orthodox Jewish audience at the time, he has since pretty much said exactly the opposite after receiving heat from basically everyone. But one part of Paladino's iffy apology has struck a chord with some people. From the Washington Post:

Part of Paladino's apology though, indicates the degree to which the Democrats' longtime hedge on equal marriage rights for gays and lesbians continues to backfire. In trying to legitimize his extreme anti-gay views, Paladino insisted in his apology that "I have the same position on this issue as President Barrack [sic] Obama." The president supports civil unions but not same-sex marriage.

That excuse has been used before — perhaps most memorably when Donald Trump was defending then-Miss California Carrie Prejean — and for some it underscores a serious problem in the Democratic party right now. Namely, how progressive can they (or maybe more accurately, the Democratic leadership) be when extreme-right candidates can claim they hold the exact same views?

Of course, the flip side of the argument could be that we as a culture have progressed far enough on gay rights that no one, conservative or liberal, would be against such things. (I don't buy that for even one second.) But that aside, I just think I want my progressive a bit more forward thinking.