What's funnier than a straight anti-gay bigot named "Breda" (Brēd-ä)? A closeted gay Republican elected official named "Randy Boehning."
A North Dakota lawmaker who sent an explicit photo of himself to another man says the exchange being made public is retaliation for a recent vote against expanding gay rights. State Rep. Randy Boehning, a 52-year-old Republican legislator from Fargo, says a Capitol employee told him a fellow lawmaker vowed to out him as gay if he continued to vote against bills granting gays legal protections against discrimination. Boehning refused to identify at this point who he believes is behind the purported political payback for his vote against Senate Bill 2279, the third such bill defeated in the past six years by North Dakota legislators.
Ha ha. No. Randy Boehning wasn't outed by a political operative. The Gay Mafia, of which I am a member (Laurie Bell just outed me as a member), didn't out Randy Boehning. Neil Patrick Harris didn't get his gal pal Ellen to do it. This American hero did it:
The exchange came to light when Dustin Smith, a 21-year-old Bismarck man with no known connections to the Capitol, contacted The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead earlier this month, saying he recognized Boehning from a gay dating smartphone app called Grindr. Chatting under the user name Top Man!, Boehning sent Smith sexually suggestive messages and, in the early morning hours of March 12, an unsolicited photo of his penis, according to exchanges reviewed by The Forum. "How can you discriminate against the person you're trying to pick up?" Smith said in a recent interview.
So it wasn't the Gay Mafia. It was the much, much younger man Randy Boehning was trying to pick up on Grindr who recognized the state legislator and then decided to do the right thing and out the hypocritical bastard. There aren't a lot of 21-year-old guys on Grindr who could pick one of their state legislators out of a lineup—so, hey, props to the political aware and politically righteous Dustin Smith. He done good.
What does Randy Boehning have to say for himself?
1. On sending dick pics: "That’s what we do, exchange pics.” Amongst other things. (See also: spit, spunk, barbs, rings.)
2. On voting against protections for gay people even though he's gay people himself: "Boehning... voted against multiple attempts to extend protected-class status to include sexual orientation because he doesn't believe his south Fargo constituents support it."
3. On being out of the closet now: "Boehning, who is not married, said there are people who know he is gay, but many of his family members and friends do not. He said Saturday he is also attracted to women and was relieved to come out because he no longer has to worry about being outed. 'The 1,000-pound gorilla has been lifted,' he said."
Wait a second—Randy Boehning is attracted to women too? My apologies to the bisexual community for opening this post with a thoughtless act of bisexual erasure. Like this bi guy told Tracy Clark-Flory in a piece she wrote for Salon about bisexual invisibility in 2011...
“Whenever, say, some prominent heterosexually married male public figure has a same-sex affair, literally everyone rolls their eyes at the ‘closeted homosexual,’” he says. “I’m not sure I remember ever hearing someone seriously entertain the possibility that the philanderer was bisexual.”
Hey, everyone, let's not literally roll our eyes and call Randy Boehning a closeted gay Republican elected official—and that's just what most people are calling him—instead let's strike a blow for bisexual visibility by literally rolling our eyes and calling him a closeted bisexual Republican elected official instead.
So, yeah, Randy Boehning is all yours, bisexual community! Enjoy him!