When people accused Carl Paladino of being a racist over the summer, he brought out his black friend (and former Buffalo Bills running back) Thurman Thomas to defend him. So when everyone and their mom accused him of being homophobic this week, Paladino turned to his gay nephew, also a campaign staffer, to help show that it wasn't true, proudly stating, "I enjoy a close relationship with my nephew who is gay and I certainly consider him to be a functional child of God." Except even his nephew was pissed—his nephew was especially pissed. "Obviously, I'm very offended by his comments." Jeff Hannon told the Post.
Hannon, 23, was so pissed, he reportedly hasn't shown up to the campaign offices since the remarks were made earlier this week. When the Daily News reached him, he told them, "I don't want my face to be all over the newspaper over this." It may be too late, since Uncle Carl has used Hannon's struggle as a sound bite this week to help contextualize his comments. "My nephew is a wonderful boy and he’s gay. And I see the difficulty he suffers every day with discriminatory people," he said on ABC’s Good Morning America this week.
And according to Rabbi Yehuda Levin, that's the real reason why Paladino apologized for his remarks yesterday. "He [Caputo] said he had to do it because of his nephew. He said he was receiving pressure from his family," Rabbi Levin told the Post. Not that Rabbi Levin, who supposedly penned the infamous "dysfunctional homosexual" line in Paladino's original speech, had much sympathy: "Mazel tov. We’ll have a coming out party. But when he came to me three days ago, he didn’t know that? I find this to be condescending," he said.