Ivy Taylor booed over NDO question at mayoral debate

Mayor Ivy R. Taylor was booed at the Pints & Politics II candidate forum while she tried to defend her comment that the NDO was a political stunt. (Photos: Facebook)

Updated: April 15, 2015, 3:11 p.m.

Interim Mayor Ivy Taylor was booed during an April 14 mayoral candidate forum sponsored by the Rivard Report when she tried to defend her comment that the nondiscrimination ordinance was a political stunt.

Taylor originally made the remark during a March 31 mayoral candidate forum moderated by Rick Casey at the KLRN-TV studios when she said, “I found when I became mayor that there have been no efforts to actually implement the ordinance that had been passed and so I felt that it was a political stunt.”

At Tuesday’s Pints & Politics II forum at the Pearl Stable, local ally and activist Janet Burrage Grigsby asked Taylor about her “political stunt” comment and about her attendance at the LGBT fundraiser for Fiesta Youth.

Last weekend, Taylor paid a neighborly visit to the home of Keith Wichinski and David Willet, her next door neighbors on Dignowity Hill who just coincidentally were hosting a party to raise money for a nonprofit that supports LGBT youth.

In a Facebook post after the debate, Grigsby commented:

She literally dug in deeper, defended the comment completely. I mentioned the event she attended this weekend and that the lgbt people, their allies, parents and many of the young people at the party fought very hard for the NDO and how would she like to respond to them (and the lgbt community at large and their allies) about her “shockingly insensitive” stunt comment. She said the lgbt community did “nothing” to move the implementation of the NDO along, so she thought it was a political stunt. She also said she went to the party to support her neighbors because THEY believed in the cause. The question received huge support from the audience, she however was booed and then she demanded that she be treated with respect.

“Ivy Taylor’s answer to my question about her NDO ‘political stunt’ comment reveals her once again as the candidate that WILL NOT represent all citizens of our city,” Grigsby added.

Last November, HRC San Antonio honored Grigsby with the Chuck Jordan Award for lifetime advocacy for her work with Planned Parenthood, PFLAG and CAUSA.

In an article about the debate on the Rivard Report web site, Iris Dimmick confirms that Taylor was indeed booed by some audience members. She goes on to detail the mayor’s comments:

Taylor stood by her vote against the ordinance in 2013 as the District 2 council member and how she, as mayor, found a lack of tools to actually enforce it disheartening, but she did note that as mayor she has supported NDO “because it is the law.”

“I don’t believe in discrimination against anyone for any reason,” she said, adding that in 2011, she voted in favor of expanding City benefits to domestic partners. “(The NDO) included a stipulation that would make it apply to businesses … I was concerned that was an added layer that could negatively impact small businesses and cause some of those small business owners that would have to choose between their faith and the law.”

Once the NDO was passed, nothing came of it, she said and reiterated that she “felt that those folks who were, you know, at the front lines advocating that they felt this was so important for the city that they had not done the work to actually implement that ordinance … I have worked to create the mechanisms” to do so.

Janet Burrage Grisby, standing left of Mike Villarreal after the Pints & Politics II mayoral forum at the Pearl Stable on April 14.

Janet Burrage Grisby, standing left of Mike Villarreal after the Pints & Politics II mayoral forum at the Pearl Stable on April 14.

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