On Monday, after much speculation, actress and activist Cynthia Nixon—best known for her role as Miranda Hobbes in the hit HBO series Sex and the City announced her intention to run for New York governor against Andrew Cuomo.
The next day, former City Council speaker and one-time mayoral candidate—and openly gay supporter of Gov. Andrew Cuomo—Christine Quinn denounced her as an “unqualified lesbian.”
As she told The New York Post:
I’m surprised by this race. It’s a flight of fancy on her part. Cynthia Nixon was opposed to having a qualified lesbian become mayor of New York City. Now she wants an unqualified lesbian to be the governor of New York. You have to be qualified and have experience. She isn’t qualified to be the governor.
Later in the day Quinn backpedaled via her Twitter feed.
Part one of her four-part attempt at an apology and clarification:
To be clear, Cynthia Nixon’s identity has no bearing on her candidacy and it was not my intention to suggest it did. I want to be clear about that. I would never, EVER, criticize someone because of their identity. 1/4— Christine Quinn (@chriscquinn) March 20, 2018
But Twitterers weren't having it:
You 100% criticized her identity. Maybe through poor choice of words, maybe not, but you IN PREPARED REMARKS called her "an unqualified lesbian".— Robbie Rozelle (@divarobbie) March 20, 2018
That’s EXACTLY what you called her. You don’t GET to walk this back.— (((Russell Brasel))) (@RussellBrasel) March 20, 2018
They really weren't having it:
Buuuuuuuuuuuut you did. It’s funny how politicians say things that show their true colors and who they are.... then it’s oops sorry didn’t mean it. Buuuuuuuuut you did 🤷🏽♀️ ?— 🌊🌊Gretchen Downey🌊🌊 (@gdowney32) March 20, 2018
Sounds vindictive to me. You could have just called her an unqualified candidate, but you chose not to.— MN_Michele (@MN_DIYmom) March 20, 2018
Part 2 of the non-apology:
I’ve experienced it time and time again, and would never support it or condone it. As a lesbian who ran one of the most high profile races in the country, i know what that’s like. And I know it’s imperative that we encourage more members of our community to run for office. 2/4— Christine Quinn (@chriscquinn) March 20, 2018
Sounds like spin, Christine. Instead of saying you’d “never support or condone” reducing Ms. Nixon to her sexual identity, why not take full responsibility, own it as a teachable moment and move on? Denial of the obvious is not a good look.— Rosebud (@ewtvc15) March 20, 2018
And parts 3 and 4:
Cynthia Nixon aggressively opposed my candidacy in New York despite my qualifications for the office and despite my strong progressive credentials. I was attempting to make a comparison between the two of us. 3/4— Christine Quinn (@chriscquinn) March 20, 2018
The real point I am trying to make is that qualifications matter and records matter. I do not believe she has the qualifications or the record. 4/4— Christine Quinn (@chriscquinn) March 20, 2018
And Twitter continued to let her have it, no mercy:
A whole lot of us New Yorkers opposed your candidacy, that's why you lost. You overturned the will of NYC citizens by overturning term limits, & you fought against paid family leave. So we chucked you out of the mayor's race, just like we're gonna chuck @NYGovCuomo out of Albany.— Nick Westrate (@westratenick) March 20, 2018
It's really odd to see a lesbian calling out another lesbian's lesbianism. "My opponent is an unfit cis!" said nobody ever....— Cassandra (@shelbyabbie) March 20, 2018
SO not buying this backpedaling. Unbelievable. The second you used 'lesbian' to describe Ms. Nixon, you lost any LGBT credibility with me and hopefully any other LGBT voter. Particularly because you are part of the community. Shame on you.— Eileen P Arnold 🏳️🌈 (@winterlongone) March 20, 2018
Even Judd Apatow chimed in: