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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Ed Montanari Joined Protest Opposing Gay Marriage, Supporting Gay Conversion Therapy

 

St Petersburg, FL – In a Facebook post made available to the Orlando Acosta campaign, St. Petersburg Council candidate Ed Montanari bragged about attending a right-wing protest that opposed gay marriage and supported gay conversion therapy as well as the right to fire employees for being gay. A screen capture of the post is available here. Montanari is the only Councilmember who refuses to attend St. Pete Pride, saying in 2007 that he would never attend the event.

The protests were largely popularized by anti-LGBTQ crusader and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee after The WinShape Foundation, an endeavor of Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy, made donations to organizations the Southern Poverty Law Center classifies as hate groups.

In addition to other anti-LGBTQ policies, they oppose gay marriage, support gay conversion therapy, and support the right to fire people for being gay. They also refused to allow same-sex couples to participate in their organization’s activities. Anti-LGBTQ protestors around the country, including Montanari, took part in the day-of-action largely as a response to gains made by the LGBTQ community in previous years.

“In St. Petersburg, we value equality and fairness for everyone no matter who they love,” Orlando Acosta said in response to Montanari’s anti-LGBTQ views. “Ed’s stance on LGBTQ rights, common sense gun control, and environmental protection do not reflect who we are as a city and they do not reflect our values as a community.”

Montanari’s participation in anti-LGBTQ protests are the latest in a troubling pattern of right-wing beliefs that have emerged during his campaign. In 2007, Montanari told the St. Petersburg Times that he would not attend future Pride Parades or support the LGBTQ community. Montanari is also the only Councilmember who opposed measures to protect the environment and cut down on pollution in Tampa Bay. In 2018, he voted against a common sense gun control initiative less than 2 months after the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

 
 

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Political advertisement paid for and approved by Orlando Acosta for St. Petersburg City Council, District 3.
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