With all the talk over Mitt Romney’s bullying of a presumed gay classmate, some have questioned whether it’s fair to judge someone on their actions in high school. But everyone agrees that anything from a recent political career is fair game.
So it’s telling that one doesn’t have to reach that far back to find other incidents of LGBT bullying from Romney’s close staff. Romney campaign senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom (of Etch-a-Sketch fame) outed a transgender woman in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, effectively ending her political career, when he was a reporter for the Boston Herald.
Fehrnstrom saved his cheap shots for smaller-time Massachusetts pols. When a political activist and gadfly named Althea Garrison was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives, the fact that she was transgender was an open secret in Boston political circles. But Fehrnstrom was the first one to put that information into print—”I can remember his glee when he found the birth certificate,” says former Herald reporter Robert Connolly—thus bringing a swift end to Garrison’s future on Beacon Hill.
Romney himself also abolished a commission working against LGBT bullying in Massachusetts as governor.