Sunday, April 25, 2010 1:00 AM ET | By Scotty Gore
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — A state senate race in Pennsylvania shares similarities with a recent storyline on “One Life to Live.”
Who says that what happens on a soap opera couldn’t possibly occur in real life? Last fall, Llanview mayoral candidate Dorian Cramer Lord (Robin Strasser) pretended to be a homosexual in order to win the town’s gay vote and defeat her archival Viki Banks (Erika Slezak) in the election.
Sounds outlandish, right? Well, before you answer, check this out. Earlier this month, Incumbent State Representative Babette Josephs accused her opponent Gregg Kravitz in the upcoming Pennsylvania Democratic primary of lying about being a bi-sexual in a attempt to win the local LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) vote bloc. In addition, the 70-year-old Joesphs, who is a widow, has also called the 29-year-old Kravitz a “trust fund baby.”
“That kind of taunting is going to make it more difficult for closeted members of the LGBT community to be comfortable with themselves” Kravitz told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “It’s damaging.”
Josephs, who has served the district since 1984, shocked those in attendance at a recent campaign event when she commented that “I outed him as a straight person. This guy’s a gem. There will be cheating if he can get away with it, because he already has tried to lie to people about a whole bunch of stuff, including his sexuality.” According to Josephs, Kravitz told her he was gay, and then later introduced her to a woman claimed he was currently dating.
Kravitz fired back at Josephs, telling the Associated Press that he didn’t remember telling people that he liked to “swing both ways” and that “My point was that in 2010, a person’s sexuality is not an issue; the issue is record of achievement. I am extraordinarily proud of my record of achievement on the LGBT community, which I do for the sake of good public policy and because it’s right.” Kravitz has worked on Wall Street and has been a staffer for other political campaigns.
Philadelphia’s LGBT ‘Liberty City Democrats’ has endorsed Josephs. She has voted against a proposed ban on gay marriage and helped get sexual orientation added to the state’s hate crimes law.
The heated race in is the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s 182nd State House District, which serves the portion of Philadelphia locals refer to as ‘Gayborhood.’ The district is near the area which Agnes Nixon used as a backdrop for her daytime dramas “All My Children,” “One Life to Live,” and “Loving.”
“We’ve hit a new high point when candidates are accused of pretending to be gay to win a seat. I’ve been doing this for 40 years, and I never have heard of this kind of charge in any race in the nation. I take that as flattery. It shows how far we’ve come,” gay rights advocate and editor of the Philadelphia Gay News, Mark Segal tells the Philadelphia Inquirer. Apparently Mr. Segal is not a fan of “One Life to Live.”
Pennsylvanians will head to the polls on May 18th to vote in the primary election. You can read more about the story here.
“One Life to Live” airs Weekdays on ABC. Weeknights on SOAPnet. Anytime on ABC.com and SOAPnet.com. Check local listings.