Kenneth Mehlman

Christine Quinn

As we all await a vote on gay marriage in New York, the New York Observer came out with a wonderful list: the 50 most powerful gay people in New York. They’ve called them “power gays,” and that, my friends, is just fun to say. Here, I’ll use it in a scene.

OLD GUY: Is that guy over there… a gay?
ELIE: No. He’s a POWER gay.

The number one most powerful gay person in New York is City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. That makes sense. Christine Quinn could well be the next mayor of New York City, and unlike other potential NYC mayoral candidates, she doesn’t have a penis that can be photographed and disseminated over Twitter.

But, more relevant for our purposes, the power gays include a number of lawyers….

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Ken Mehlman: Yup, he's gay.

Back in June, we wrote about the fabulous Chelsea apartment snapped up by prominent Republican lawyer Ken Mehlman. Although his résumé is strewn with achievements — he’s a 1991 graduate of Harvard Law School (just like President Obama), a former partner at Akin Gump, and a current executive vice-president at Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (ka-ching!) — Mehlman is most well-known as former chairman of the Republican National Committee.

Because Mehlman settled in Chelsea — and took up residence in the Chelsea Mercantile building, home to such A-list gays as Marc Jacobs and Lance Bass — we couldn’t resist a little innuendo. Despite his status as a leading official of the Republican Party, which hasn’t always been down with the gays, Mehlman has long been dogged by rumors that he is a homosexual.

Now we don’t have to worry about Mehlman suing us for defamation — and litigating the interesting issue of whether calling someone a big old nelly queen constitutes defamation per se in New York. Mehlman just publicly admitted that he’s gay, in an interview with Marc Ambinder of The Atlantic. (The publication of the interview may have been accelerated, thanks to a nudge from Mike Rogers of BlogActive.)

Let’s take a closer look at the pink elephant in the room….

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