A tale of two candidates

Of the two candidates campaigning to be the mayor of Las Vegas, one is polished, professional and prepared. The other is Carolyn Goodman.

The stark differences between Goodman, founder of the Meadows School and wife of Oscar, and county commissioner Chris Giunchigliani were on full display at Las Palmas restaurant May 10 for the Lambda Business Association’s candidate forum.

In front of a crowd of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender voters, Goodman suggested that the best option for people seeking to legalize same-sex marriage would be to move to another state. She took a twisting path to finally acknowledging that she supports domestic partnerships — it took a lot of prodding from moderator Steve Friess to get her there — but stopped short of saying that gay people should be allowed to marry. “My religious beliefs and the way I live my life, I’m not in favor of that.”

When she used the word “transvestite,” perhaps meaning to say “transgender,” sniggers were audible in the crowd. Goodman was winning few friends here.

Giunchigliani’s reply to the same-sex marriage question: “Full legalization. Absolutely. This is a civil rights issue and a human rights issue.” Agree with her or not, an unequivocal answer from a politician is a refreshing.

She voiced her support for the anti-discrimination bills working their way through the Nevada Senate that would expand protections to the transgendered, and even showed some grammatical dazzle by busting out the word “transgendering.” The crowd was moony. Goodman left before Giunchigliani’s allotted time was finished.

Bob Whitby is the senior staff writer for Vegas Seven.