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Connecticut state Senate rejects what would have been the first openly gay Chief Justice

Written by gaytourism

Governor Dannel P. Malloy (right) announces his nomination of Justice Andrew J. McDonald to serve as Chief Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court in January.

The Connecticut state Senate recently shot down Supreme Court Justice Andrew J. McDonald’s bid to lead the court.

The vote was lost at 19-16. All 18 of the chamber’s Republicans, plus one Democrat, voted to reject McDonald.

McDonald, who is openly gay, would have been the first out Chief Justice in the nation.


On Monday, 26 March, Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced the Republicans’ plan to reject McDonald. Malloy hinted that some of the opposition might be because McDonald is gay.

The Republican state Senators who rejected McDonald said his homosexuality had nothing to do with their votes, rather what they deem to be McDonald’s ‘liberal bias.’ McDonald angered many Republicans when he supported a Supreme Court decision to get rid of the death penalty back in 2012.

‘This is not about Justice McDonald’s personal views on how he wants to run his personal life,’ said Republican Senator John Kissel. ‘The story is about a handful of judicial cases. We don’t want an activist chief justice driving this branch of government. It’s a dyed-in-the-wool Democratic background that Justice McDonald has.’

Support of the state

Still, McDonald had the support of various Connecticut-based legal establishments, including the state’s bar association, law school deans, and more.

In a statement, McDonald wrote:

‘To the LGBT community, particularly its youth who I know have been closely watching this process, I want you to understand that every minority group in history has faced setbacks. In the fullness of time, those setbacks usually end up becoming a source of strength.’


Many citizens and politicians in Connecticut expressed their anger and disappointment at the Senate’s decision. Others were happy with the outcome and took to Twitter to explain why.

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