Hutchison irks GOP by recommending gay judge for U.S. attorney

Kay Bailey HutchisonSen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) has sent the White House two suggestions for the post of U.S. attorney in San Antonio. One of the candidates is a highly regarded career prosecutor and judge who also, it turns out, is openly gay, reports the Dallas Morning News.

Some Republicans are vehemently and unapologetically not ready for that. That could make it even harder for Hutchison to woo social conservatives in her bid to outflank and oust Gov. Rick Perry in March.

Tim Lambert, president of the Texas Home School Coalition and a former member of the Republican National Committee, called the recommendation “very unusual and disturbing.”

Last month, Hutchison and fellow GOP Sen. John Cornyn endorsed two applicants for chief prosecutor in the Western District of Texas, which includes Austin, San Antonio and El Paso: Robert Pitman, a U.S. magistrate in Austin, and San Antonio criminal defense lawyer Michael McCrum.

Pitman is highly regarded in legal circles. In a recent bar poll, lawyers rated him the most competent judge in Travis County. His sexual orientation was a key element of a 2003 profile in the Austin American-Statesman.

“Senator Hutchison made her recommendations based on the merits of each individual’s qualifications and their abilities,” said spokesman Jeff Sadosky, declining to discuss potential political fallout.

Full Story, Dallas Morning News.

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