The owner of queer publications The Advocate and Out has broken a pledge he made two years ago to stop donating to anti-LGBT+ Republicans.
Adam Levin is the owner of Oreva Capital, the parent company of Pride Media. Pride Media represents many LGBT+ media brands, including The Advocate, Out, Pride.com and Plus.
In 2018, it was revealed that Levin had a history of donating to anti-LGBT+ Republican politicians like Josh Mandel, Dean Heller and Devin Nunes, who all opposed marriage equality and voted against anti-discrimination protections for the LGBT+ community. Levin also donated to Dana Rohrabacher, who said it was fine to refuse to sell houses to LGBT+ people.
Nathan Coyle, who was CEO of Pride Media at the time, told Queerty in 2018 that Levin’s donations were related to the politicians’ pro-Israel or pro-cannabis policies, but pledged that donations to anti-LGBT+ candidate would not happen again.
Coyle said: “[Levin’s donations to anti-LGBT+ Republicans] will not continue.
“[Someone] who has also expressed support for anti-LGBTQ policies or legislation will no longer be receiving any political donations from Adam Levin.”
However, just two years later, it seems Levin has already broken this pledge.
According to OpenSecrets, in June this year the straight owner of Pride Media donated $2,800 each to two anti-LGBT+ Republicans.
Thom Tillis in North Carolina and Steve Daines in Montana are both incumbent Republican senators who have extensive anti-LGBT+ records, according to LGBTQ Nation.
In 2012, Tillis supported Amendment One in North Carolina, which banned same-sex marriage, and as speaker of the North Carolina House, he promised to push back against federal legalisation of marriage equality.
In 2017, Tillis was asked about his opinion on the anti-trans “bathroom bill”, he insisted that he was against “extremes on both sides”. He also co-sponsored the First Amendment Defense Act, a bill that would block the federal government from enforcing anti-discrimination protections or civil rights laws in cases where people acted based on “a sincerely held religious belief” in marriage.
Daines has an equally terrible record on LGBT+ issues.
In 2013, he co-sponsored the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act, which aimed to allow anti-LGBT+ discrimination on the basis of religious freedom. He also co-sponsored the State Marriage Defense Act in 2014, aiming to block same-sex married couples from accessing state benefits.
Also in 2014, he voted against the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and in 2015 he voted against protecting LGBT+ youth and providing social security and veteran’s benefits to same-sex couples.
Just last year, he blocked the senate from voting on the Equality Act. Daines has also been horse riding with Mike Pence.
A former Pride Media staffer anonymously told LGBTQ Nation that when his anti-LGBT+ donations were revealed the first time around, Levin had seemed “apologetic”.
They said: “He seemed like he was speaking to us straight up.
“He kind of deflected [when talking about the anti-LGBTQ donations] by saying that he had a member of his family recently come out and because of that, he was rethinking his relationship with the community, and part of that was his interest in LGBTQ media.
“This is a straight guy who has never had to deal with actions [from anti-LGBTQ Republicans and donors] that are in direct conflict with the people he employed or the publications that are directly in line with the LGBTQ community.
“It’s very questionable why he’d be supporting these candidates.”