GOP Gov. Selects Gay Running Mate
Pat Guerriero Selected to Run as Lt. Governor, Historic First for MA
(WASHINGTON, DC) – Republican Governor Jane Swift of Massachusetts will make history today by selecting Patrick C. Guerriero, an openly gay Republican activist and senior aide, to run on her ticket as Lieutenant Governor in the 2002 election – a first for a sitting governor.
Guerriero, a former state representative and the former mayor of Melrose, Massachusetts, will resign his position as Swift's Deputy Chief of Staff to campaign full time.
"This is a historic step for either party, to have the first openly gay running mate selected by a sitting governor in American history, and we're proud it was made by a Republican," said Rich Tafel, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans. "The Massachusetts Republicans have always been on the cutting edge of the future of the GOP, starting with the anti-slavery and women's sufferage movements, to Governor William Weld's first-ever gay youth commission in 1991 to this moment in history with Governor Swift."
"Governor Swift has made history by breaking a major barrier in Massachusetts for gays and lesbians, and we strongly applaud her leadership," said Chris Ferguson, president of Log Cabin Republicans of Massachusetts. "Pat Guerriero brings strength to the Republican ticket, not only with his record of winning elections and bringing people together, but also for his tireless advocacy for citizens from all walks of life in Massachusetts," Ferguson said."
Guerriero served three terms in the state legislature before a successful two terms as mayor of Melrose, where he campaigned on a "return to civility" and an end to divisive politics in the town. As mayor, Guerriero also was a strong supporter of the gay community and of Log Cabin Republicans. Turning away critics, Guerriero strongly supported a gay-straight alliance program at Melrose High School. He also was awarded the prestigious Fenn Award for Political Leadership by the John F. Kennedy Library in 1998.