Gay Debate Creates Local Speculation - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Gay Debate Creates Local Speculation

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Tri-Cities -- There will be another presidential debate tonight.  It will be the second debate this week for democrats running for the nation's highest office.  But this one is different than any other debate in history.

It targets issues affecting lesbians, gays, bi- sexuals, and transgender Americans. One Kennewick advocate says he believes the candidates will discuss civil unions; but he says they will likely gloss over the issue of same sex marriage.

Mark Lee, who runs Vista Youth Center in Kennewick, a club for LGBT teenagers, said he believes politicians may wait to tell the truth about their views on same sex marriage until after the election.

In spite of that Lee said he feels positive about the discussion.

"To be able to watch people that are running (for office) to control the country discussing issues I face every day--discrimination, bias, healthcare--I am moved, and feel included."

Lee, who said he has spent much of his life feeling like an outsider, said that the fact that candidates are willing to talk about issues affecting him and so many others, in a national public forum, indicates that politicians are recognizing the power of the LGBT constituency. 

Candidates taking part in tonight's debate include Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, and Barack Obama.