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House Republicans Cancel Economist's Testimony Due To Homophobic Posts...or Homophobia

Conservative economist Joe Sabia was due to testify against the $15 per hour minimum wage until someone dug up 20-year old homophobic blog posts. The only problem? Sabia is gay, and is in a long-term relationship.

Republicans and other creatures of the night are not fond of the $15 an hour minimum wage.

So the House Education and the Workforce Committee was schedule to hold a hearing today on the economic evils of raising the minimum wage. They had everything all ready and set to go, along with your usual chicken littles to scream how small business people will be hurt. You’d think they’d learn that nothing trickles down but everything bubbles up. But, no they don’t ever learn.

The hearing was suddenly cancelled and I know you’re anxious to know why.

The House Education and the Workforce Committee postponed a hearing scheduled for today on the economic consequences of a $15 hourly minimum wage after homophobic and sexist blog posts surfaced that were penned by one of the Republican witnesses, San Diego State University economist Joseph Sabia. In a 2002 post published on his personal column “No Shades of Gray” (which has since been taken down but can be accessed through the Wayback Machine, an internet archive) Sabia suggested the idea to “tax and regulate homosexual acts.”

In another 2002 blog post titled “College Girls: Unpaid Whores,” Sabia argued that feminism “taught young women that equality is achieved by acting like promiscuous sluts.” Kelley McNabb, communications director for the committee’s majority confirmed to POLITICO that “members were uncomfortable moving forward on the hearing” upon discovering the posts.

“Uncomfortable,” you say?

Update and Editor's Note: Sabia and San Diego State released statements which cast doubt on the real reason Republicans decided not to hold the hearing with him.

SDSU:

The language and sentiments expressed in these posts are counter to the values of any institution which supports the principles of diversity and inclusion. SDSU unequivocally rejects any sentiment which seeks to undermine or devalue the dignity of any person based on their gender, orientation, ability, or any other difference among people which has been an excuse for misunderstanding, dissension or hatred.

Sabia:

"I regret the hurtful and disrespectful language I used as a satirical college opinion writer 20 years ago," said Sabia. “I am a gay man in a long-term, committed relationship and these charges of homophobia deeply hurt both me and my family.”


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"My peer-reviewed professional work on veterans' health, school shootings, discrimination against LGBTQ individuals, the opioid crisis, and the minimum wage are a more accurate representation of my more than 14-year career as an applied microeconomist,” Sabia continued.

I cannot bold that part enough, that part where Dr. Sabia says he is a gay man in a long-term, committed relationship. Because he may not be homophobic, but I'll damn sure guarantee you Republicans do not want to put that guy up as any kind of expert about anything, simply because the evangelical backlash would be brutal. Let's face it: Republicans like gays in committed relationships even less than they like the $15 minimum wage. - Karoli

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