Frank Rich and the Big Republican Gay List

Editor/columnist Frank Rich goes wild in his Sunday (TimesSelect $ required) column, "The Gay Old Party Comes Out," doing a little cowardly outing by proxy regarding the alleged "list" of prominent gay Republicans.

"And while you're cruising the Internet, a little creative Googling will yield a long list of who else is gay, openly and not, in the highest ranks of both the Bush administration and the Republican hierarchy....The split between the Republicans' outward homophobia and inner gayness isn't just hypocrisy; it's pathology. Take the bizarre case of Karl Rove. Every one of his Bush campaigns has been marked by a dirty dealing of the gay card, dating back to the lesbian whispers that pursued Ann Richards when Mr. Bush ousted her as Texas governor in 1994. Yet we now learn from 'The Architect,' the recent book by the Texas journalists James Moore and Wayne Slater, that Mr. Rove's own (and beloved) adoptive father, Louis Rove, was openly gay in the years before his death in 2004. This will be a future case study for psychiatric clinicians as well as historians."

Times reporter Nicholas Confessore sees it differently in a negative review of "The Architect" the same day: "But the book veers into thoroughly unappealing territory when the authors insinuate, in a chapter all the more lurid for its pretense of sympathy, that Rove's adoptive father, Louis Rove, left Karl's mother because he was gay.")

Apparently Rich doesn't have any such qualms about such insinuations against deceased family members of a political enemy.

"The moment Mr. Foley's e-mails became known, we saw that brand of fearmongering and bigotry at full tilt: Bush administration allies exploited the former Congressman's predatory history to spread the grotesque canard that homosexuality is a direct path to pedophilia. It's the kind of blood libel that in another era was spread about Jews."