Gay Republican Candidate
‘Comfortable’ in GOP
New England - Once the heartland of the GOP, New England is now the wasteland of the GOP with not one single Republican Congressman.
That might change with former State Senator Richard Tisei, a real estate broker and the former State Senate minority leader. Tisei was the 2012 GOP nominee in the Democrat held 6th Congressional district in Massachusetts.
Tisei lost the 2012 election by only 3,650 votes out of 372,224 cast in a landslide year where Comrade Obama carried Massachusetts with 60% of the vote.
The openly-gay New Englander, Tisei is an iconoclast in his party.
Tisei said in a recent interview with CQ Roll Call that he does not find himself in a hostile party. In fact, given that he represents one of the party’s best chances to once again hold a New England congressional seat — something he thinks is necessary for the GOP to be a national party — Tisei is seeing plenty of support reports Roll Call.
“I feel very comfortable with the history of the party,” Tisei said, mentioning the GOP’s involvement in women’s suffrage and the Civil Rights movement.
“I’m also a small business owner. … I support our free enterprise system,” Tisei added. “I think smaller government is a good thing. I think people should be making choices for themselves, rather than the government making choices for them. So in a lot of the philosophies, both economic and as far as individual rights go, I feel very comfortable in the party.”
Tisei may be headed for a rematch with Rep. John F. Tierney, but the incumbent faces a competitive Sept. 9 Democratic primary against veteran Seth Moulton. In a recent interview with CQ Roll Call, Moulton charged that some Democrats privately want him to be the party nominee over Tierney.
Tisei says he doesn’t care whom he faces.
“People are more open to change right now than they’ve ever been,” Tisei said. “I don’t really care who’s on the other side. I know what I’m about, and I want to establish a great rapport with voters of the district.”
As he awaits an opponent, Tisei is utilizing his connection with another gay GOP candidate, former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio, by setting up a joint fundraising committee to help finance their campaigns.
When asked which national Republican he would like to campaign for him in the fall, Tisei pointed to a fellow Northeasterner.
“Of course, I would call Rudy Giuliani. He came for me last time and helped me,” Tisei said. “He was obviously a hit in my area, because people really respect the fact that he’s an independent-minded leader — and the fact that he’s Italian doesn’t hurt either.”
Richard Tisei Announces He's Running for Congress
|Massachusetts's 6th congressional district election, 2012|
|Democratic||John F. Tierney (incumbent)||179,603||48.3%|
Ultra close 2012 election
|Massachusetts's current House districts|