Paul Babeu, who is facing charges that he threatened to have his former partner, Mexican national Jose Orozco, deported, has raised nearly $14,000 online since the story broke, POLITICO.com reported.
The 43-year-old Babeu, the sheriff of Pinal County, Arizona and a GOP candidate for Congress, denied the charges during a press conference on Saturday, but acknowledged he's gay.
“We're getting lots of support, new and old,” Babeu adviser Chris DeRose told POLITICO. “Paul's headlined two events since then, one in Prescott and [another] in Yuma, and gotten an enthusiastic response at both.”
However, others interviewed for the story said the charges are explosive enough to derail Babeu's campaign.
“Being gay and dating a Mexican who may or may not be legal is a double whammy in the district he's running in for Congress,” said political observer Steve Clawson. “I'm not sure what will hurt him worse.”
“Keep in mind the western part of the district, Mohave County, is currently represent by Congressman Trent Franks, so that gives you an idea of how conservative it is,” he added.
Franks last year said he would support impeaching President Barack Obama over his decision to no longer defend in court the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which bans federal agencies from recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples.
In contrast, Babeu earlier this week endorsed gay marriage.
Source: On Top Magazine