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Banner Plane Flies over Super Bowl:
'Bush Stole Election'

Protest Seen by Thousands, Takes Place Prior to the Game

NGLTF Asks Full Investigation into Ashcroft's Testimony

Compiled By GayToday

Tampa, Florida--The arrival of Bob Kunst here as chair of the Oral Majority was heralded by mainstream media first in Florida's Boca Raton News where the veteran gay activist revealed that his organization had hired a banner plane to fly over the stadium during the Super Bowl reading: "Bush Stole the Election".

While the electoral protest group Kunst leads, the Oral Majority, had, in 2 hours, sold nearly $200 worth of No More Bushit buttons, the hired banner plane flew nearly on schedule--between 5 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., eliciting spirited exchanges throughout the vast crowds. The banner plane flew a half-hour earlier, however, than had originally been planned.
kunstnobushit.jpg - 12.36 K Bob Kunst, here at an earlier protest, hired a banner plane to fly a message reading "Bush Stole the Election" over the Super Bowl last night

"Police explained that helicopters and blimps were taking over the whole stadium area at 5:30 p.m." Kunst explained, "but our banner plane-- just as I saw it from our protest point-- made at least four rounds over the stadium. It was an obvious hit with many many thousands of onlookers."

Comparing Sunday's demonstration in Tampa with the Oral Majority Freedom Riders jaunt last week in Washington, Kunst said that "the essence of what had happened in Washington when his group had protested there was that "those who confronted us were the ones who'd actually stolen the election. But here in Tampa, the people who actually paid for the election's theft were the ones who confronted us. We confronted them too, of course. It was like mouth to mouth resuscitation, a transference of fire in the air."

"The NFL had given away tickets," Kunst explains, "to the Republican Party which, in turn, gave them to their big contributors. We were ankle deep, in other words, in schoomzing bushit producers. Bushit, I tell you! And in Tampa's streets, those tickets were being scalped for between one and three thousand dollars each. "

Kunst told Boca Raton News reporter Desiree Morel he hoped the exemplary behavior of his group would help suggest some nationwide trends. ".While they're urging us to stop," she quotes him saying, "we're doing the opposite by bringing people on board. It represents true patriotism."

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"Here we number about 55 committed to our cause and we all feel like models on an outdoor stage," he, explains, "because citizens see us and they realize they're not alone in thinking that Bush is illegitimate and illegal the way they do."

"Everywhere we went we were getting support," Kunst exulted to the Boca Raton News reporter, "We were getting the reaction only by taking the risk."

The News quoted local residents of Boca Raton and Delray Beach every bit as energized against the Bush dynasty's "power grab" as is Kunst.

Following her sojourn at last week's Inaugural, Karilee Shames, 51, told the News: "We were in icy rain almost the entire four days, but it didn't dampen our spirits at all. It seemed like God was crying…It was appropriate."
NGLTF Makes Appropriate Demands about Ashcroft

With last week's revelation in the Washington Post that John Ashcroft as governor of Missouri had asked a job applicant about his sexual orientation, George W. Bush's nominee for attorney general has, says the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, once again failed the plausibility test regarding his true views on the issue of workplace equity.

Ashcroft has repeatedly claimed that he would not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, that he did not in fact block Ambassador James Hormel's nomination because of Hormel's sexual orientation, and that he does not recall being asked to sign a nondiscrimination policy as a member of the U.S. Senate.
senashcroft175.jpg - 9.33 K Attorney General-designate John Ashcroft

"It is important that the nation's highest-ranking law enforcement official tell the truth," said Elizabeth Toledo, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. "We urge members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to investigate whether John Ashcroft has responded truthfully to the questions that have been put to him."

On Thursday, the Washington Post reported that a health care expert who applied for a top Cabinet post in Missouri's state government says he was asked by Ashcroft about his sexual orientation. The applicant contends that Ashcroft's very first question was, "do you have the same sexual preference as most men?"

Through a spokeswoman, Ashcroft said he "cannot imagine" questioning a job applicant about his sexual orientation. Despite historical evidence to the contrary, Ashcroft claims that sexual orientation will not be a factor in hiring at the Department of Justice.

As a member of the U.S. Senate, Ashcroft repeatedly declined to sign a pledge that he would not discriminate against gay or lesbian employees in his Senate office.

Asked why during his confirmation hearing, Ashcroft replied, "I don't have any recollection about this statement, and frankly, I'd have to answer, 'I don't know and I don't have any recollection of that.'"

Ashcroft also denied that he held up Hormel's nomination as ambassador to Luxembourg because of Hormel's sexual orientation. But news accounts from 1998 have surfaced in which Ashcroft was quoted as objecting to Hormel's "gay lifestyle."

"Three strikes, he's out," Toledo said. "Ashcroft seems to be experiencing either amnesia or an inability to be forthright. His comments on the Hormel nomination, the nondiscrimination policy that he was asked to sign and now on the applicant he interviewed for a post in the Missouri state government do not pass the plausibility test. Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee should take this into consideration --as should the entire U.S. Senate--when they decide the fate of Mr. Ashcroft's nomination."

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