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Election reshapes gay caucus in Ga. legislature

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Three out of four openly gay incumbents in the Georgia General Assembly proved victorious in the July 31 primary, while gay challengers in contested races were less successful. A lesbian attorney also won a seat on the Fulton County State Court in the July 31 vote.

Rep. Karla Drenner, Georgia's first openly gay state legislator, was unopposed for reelection in House District 86.

Rep. Simone Bell, the first openly lesbian African-American state legislator in the nation, came out on top in the Democratic primary for State House District 58.

With 95.83 percent of precincts reporting, Bell had 58.84 percent of the vote, compared to 41.16 percent for Rep. Ralph Long, according to unofficial results from the Fulton County election office.

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Gay vs. gay-friendly race turns ugly over alleged anti-gay flier

Reps. Rashad Taylor and Pat Gardner

State Rep. Rashad Taylor (D-Atlanta), the only openly gay man in the Georgia General Assembly, claims homophobic tactics are being used by his opponents, including distributing what he called an anti-gay flier in predominantly African-American neighborhoods in southwest Atlanta.

The flier, provided to GA Voice by Taylor via email, reads: “The Real Rashad” with a photo of Taylor. Below the photo the flier states: “The only openly gay male in the Georgia General Assembly [AJC 5/27/11]; Accused of using his position in the Legislature to solicit sexual relationships [AJC, 5/27/11]; Former roommates with Khaatim El [APN, 1/20/11]; Possibly lived with a male lover on Moreland Ave [APN, 6/11/12].”

The statements come from articles published by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Atlanta Progressive News.