Two of the biggest names in Detroit politics and two of the LGBT community's biggest supporters on Capitol Hill face serious re-election difficulties in 2010, according to a new poll published by the Detroit Free Press. Reps. John Conyers Jr. and Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, both of whom have been tainted by federal corruption convictions involving family members, each lose to hypothetical opponents if the election were held today.
A poll of 300 voters each in Kilpatrick's and Conyers' congressional districts shows that only 27% of the people polled would vote for Kilpatrick. Conyers' numbers are stronger with 40% of the people polled saying they would vote for him. But only 34% of voters in Kilpatrick's district and just 22% in Conyers' district say the problems of their son and wife, respectively, affect their opinions of the two Congress members.
Kilpatrick is the mother of the disgraced and anti-gay former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. Conyers, the veteran congressman who chairs the powerful House Judiciary Committee, is the husband of former Detroit City Council President Monica Conyers who recently pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges. Cheeks Kilpatrick is considered "the weakest of the two," reports the Free Press.
At 80-years-old, Conyers is the second-longest serving member in the House. Conyers is the lead sponsor of the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act, also known as the Matthew Shepard Act. Conyers and Kilpatrick both signed the recent letters to the Obama Administration demanding an end to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" investigations and declaring they would not vote for health care reform without a public option. Conyers has a 100% HRC Rating. Cheeks Kilpatrick is rated at 85%.
Conyers and Kilpatrick Could Have it Tough [Det FreeP]