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Conservative groups attempting to kill prospective ABC show over Dan Savage influence

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Savage wrote in 2000 about volunteering for Republican Gary Bauer’s presidential campaign and, suffering from the flu, licking doorknobs in the campaign office in an attempt to infect others. He also tried to give a definition involving a gay sex act to Republican Rick Santorum’s name on Google.

“A campaign for or against the show isn’t relevant at this point as the pilot isn’t even finished yet,” Savage said. “Again, the campaign … is misdirected, as the show isn’t by me – I’m not one of the writers – and it isn’t about me.”

Bozell said he hasn’t received any reply from ABC. The early campaign offers ABC an interesting test as it decides over the next six weeks which pilots get picked up: should the network avoid “The Real O’Neals” because of the resistance, will it make network executives more determined to air the show, or will executives being able to drown out the noise and make a judgment solely on its potential for success?

Even without Savage’s involvement, Bozell said his group would probably oppose the show.

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“Would a show like this bother me?” he said. “Sure. It makes a political statement. Where is the market demand for this? You might even resign yourself that this is the way that it is, but when I heard it was Savage, I gasped in disbelief.”

Seth Adam, spokesman for GLAAD, said Savage should be commended for helping gay, lesbian and transgender young people comfortable with who they are.

“What’s clear is that inclusive shows are succeeding in the ratings and audiences not only accept LGBT characters but are beginning to expect LGBT characters,” he said.

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