The State Senate this afternoon rejected an appointee of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to the state parole board, after lawmakers criticized him for anti-gay remarks he made in 1993.
Douglas Drummond, a former Long Beach City Council member, had been censured by the council for voicing support of Fidel Castro's sequestering of gays in Cuba, applauding the fact that same-sex couples don't reproduce and saying about gay political activity: "How do we deal with it short of killing them?"
Drummond, appointed last year by Schwarzenegger to the Board of Parole Hearings, said he has made amends by making donations to gay organizations and marching in gay-pride parades. Testifying before lawmakers at his confirmation hearing this afternoon, Drummond, 72, repeatedly disavowed the anti-gay remarks he made during a private appearance at an event sponsored by a conservative group. "I was wrong," he said. "It was awful. I apologize, I really do."
State Sen. Jenny Oropeza (D-Long Beach), who once served with Drummond on the City Council, offered no forgiveness. She suggested that his reconciliation efforts were insincere and coincided with his unsuccessful campaigns for Long Beach mayor.
-- Patrick McGreevy