Update May 31, 2011

May 31, 2011

Contact: Rina Shah



CNN – “Let Fred In”


Below is a copy of the email that went out yesterday to CNN executives asking them to “Let Fred In” to its New Hampshire Debate on June 13, 2011. The invitations are going out now, and we are hopeful that as a serious candidate, they will invite Fred to participate.  Take a look at the Memorandum and feel free to send emails to:

Jim Walton, President, CNN Worldwide: jim.walton@cnn.com

Ken Jautz, Executive Vice President CNN: ken.jautz@cnn.com
Thank you!



TO:  Jim Walton, President, CNN Worldwide

Ken Jautz, Executive Vice President CNN

FROM:  Fred Karger

Date:  May 30, 2011

Re:  Let Fred In the New Hampshire Debate

The June 13, 2011 New Hampshire Republican Debate that you are hosting along with the New Hampshire Union Leader and WMUR-TV is fast approaching, and I have yet to receive an invitation.  My campaign has been in contact with CNN Senior Political Editor Mark Preston, Deputy Political Editor Paul Steinhauser and Producer Peter Hamby on several occasions.  No one has given us a definitive answer regarding my participation, and we were told that you will not make the eligibility criteria public.

I am a serious candidate for President, and I would hope that you will include me in your debate on June 13, 2011.

I have 35 years of professional political experience, which I contend is longer than anyone else running or considering running for President in 2012.  I was heavily involved in nine Republican Presidential races and dozens of other federal, state and local campaigns.

President Reagan Experience

I worked on Ronald Reagan’s 1980 election campaign and served as a senior consultant on his 1984 reelection campaign.  I served as senior staff on his first Inaugural Committee in 1980 and 1981.  My consulting firm was under contract to his Political Action Committee, Citizens for the Republic while he was President.  No one else running has the Reagan experience that I have.

A Series of Firsts

I was the first to announce that he was considering running for the Republican nomination for President at a press conference in New Orleans at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference on April 10, 2010.

I was the first potential candidate to establish a Presidential Exploratory Committee on July 18, 2010.

And I was the first serious candidate to file for President with the Federal Election Commission on March 23, 2011U S News and scores of news organizations reported on my filing, and my first interview as a declared candidate was on CBS News that day.

First Openly Gay Candidate to Run for President

My campaign has received tremendous worldwide coverage on major news outlets in over 25 countries.  My candidacy is unique, as I run for President of the United States as the first openly gay candidate in history.

More Reasons to be Included in the CNN,

New Hampshire Union Leader, WMUR-TV Debate

1) Polling: I have reached an average of 1% in five polls: Zogby, Fox News, CNN, ABC/Washington Post, CNN Poll.  (The ABC/Washington Post Poll allowed for respondents to volunteer results.)  The New York Times has me statistically tied with Gary Johnson. I have been included in at least 15 online polls and have usually finished in the top tier, including one by the Republican National Committee.

2) Strong Student Support:  I won New Hampshire’s largest straw poll of the 2012 cycle, held by St. Anselm College and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, site of your Debate.  I beat frontrunner Mitt Romney by 2%.

3) Media Coverage:  CNN has reported:  Fred Karger is “intriguing,”  The Union Leader’s Publisher Joe McQuaid said that Fred Karger was “engaging,”  WMUR TV’s Political Director James Pindell respects that Fred Karger is the only presidential candidate to “begin going to door to door, introducing himself to New Hampshire voters,” and Karger, “respects what the New Hampshire Primary is all about, so much so, he’s here more often than any other candidate. He believes New Hampshire matters.”

The Washington Post wrote its first 2012 GOP profile on me.  Great Britain’s The Observer says that my campaign “is perhaps the furthest advanced of any potential Republican candidate.” Just last week I was the first 2012 candidate to be interviewed on BBC’s HardTalk in London.  I recently returned from a trip to Israel which was widely reported.  It was front page news in the Jerusalem Post and featured in U S Election News and the New York Jewish Week.  I was interviewed live from Tel Aviv on Sky News.

Fox News, MSNBC, CBS News, WMUR, The Des Moines Register, Politico and the Huffington Post all regularly include cover my campaign and include me on their lists of 2012 candidates. Rachel Maddow reported on me and featured my newest commercial on her show last week.

Rachel Maddow Show – Fred Upper Right

4) Fundraising:  Our campaign has raised more than $400,000 which is nearly 100 times the FEC’s threshold to be seen as a serious candidate for federal office.

5) Campaign Organization:  The Fred Karger for President Campaign employs an Iowa State Director, two New Hampshire coordinators and more than half a dozen consultants in Washington DC, Florida and California.

6) Television Commercials:  I was the first to produce television ads that ran statewide in New Hampshire in September 2010 and May 2011 and Iowa in November 2010.  Here are links to the three commercials:  New Hampshire ads:  Good Morning New Hampshire and Demon Frisbee and Iowa ad: Independence Day

A Full Time Candidate

I have been to New Hampshire 14 times, and have spent far more time in the Granite Stare than any other Presidential candidate. I have been to Iowa 7 times and have campaigned in over 20 states over the past 15 months.

An Independent Voice of Reason

I am an Independent Republican running for President.  I am the only moderate Republican in the current field, and strongly hope that CNN will want someone who has a broad appeal to the 42% of registered independent voters in New Hampshire and that growing independent voter block across the nation.  My positions on the important issues of today are often at odds with the other candidates and the RNC Platform.

Ten Candidates Debated Four Years Ago

Four year ago on June 5, 2007 CNN’s Debate was inclusive and you had ten Republicans on the stage at St. Anselm College representing a broad range of views and philosophies.  I hope that you will do the same in 2011.  The American public expects nothing less from CNN.

The New Hampshire GOP Debaters in 2007 – Count ‘em 10

After reading this memorandum, I trust that you will include me in your upcoming Debate.

Thank you, and I look forward to seeing you on June 13, 1011 in Manchester.

cc:  Joseph McQuaid, New Hampshire Union Leader

James Pindell, WMUR-TV

Neil Levesque, New Hampshire Institute of Politics

Mark Preston, CNN

Paul Steinhauser, CNN

Peter Hamby, CNN

Please help us continue to get our message out.  It is making a difference.  Send in a contribution today by clicking on the red button below.  Thank you for your support!

Capitol Weekly: May 26, 2011

May 26, 2011

capitol weekly logo

Fred Karger hits the campaign trail

By Greg Lucas, 5/26/11, 12:00am PST

For link to story, Click Here

It’s May 23 and GOP presidential candidate Fred Karger is heading to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee gala in Washington, D.C. The cell phone reception is somewhere between gargling and an alien telling Captain Kirk and the crew of the Enterprise they’re doomed. Karger finds a spot where the reception improves.

Earlier this month, Karger – the first Jewish Republican to run for president – visited Israel and was profiled in the Jerusalem Post.  A few days later, he appeared on the BBC’s “HARDtalk.”

While in Tel Aviv, Karger, 61, met with leaders of the nation’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, one of Karger’s press releases says.

It would be surprising if he didn’t meet with them since Karger is the first openly gay GOP candidate for president.

“I want to change the dialogue. I want to calm down the anti-gay rhetoric. I want to open up the party not just for LGBT but everyone,” Karger said in an interview with Capitol Weekly.  “If he starts a frank conversation about qualifications as opposed to orientation then he’ll have moved the ball forward,” said Roger Salazar, a Sacramento political consultant. “And that will make it easier for the next candidate.”

At 14 trips since February 2010 when his campaign started, Karger has probably spent more time in New Hampshire than any other candidate.

In April, he bested former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney in a Saint Anselm College Republican Straw Poll by five votes, leading the field 25 percent to Romney’s 23 percent.  The result might be partly explained by Karger’s targeting of 18-to-29 year-old voters.

Much of Karger’s effort seems to be getting the GOP to take him seriously and to give him equal treatment.

Like not being included in debates. Or in polls.

“I’m batting about 500 in that regard,” he says, although he was in a recent New York Times poll that showed Romney with a 17.6 percent polling average compared to Karger’s .1 percent. Karger had 10 percent name recognition compared to Romney’s 83 percent.

“There’s three tiers of candidates in the race,” says Karger, who has never held elective office. “There’s the first tier, which keeps shrinking. The second tier, which I’m in, and the third tier of another 100 Republicans who no one has heard of which is where I started.”

When former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee – in the first tier – dropped out of the race, Karger had this comment: “There is one less candidate in the GOP presidential race. I am thrilled. I know Mike Huckabee is supposed to be a nice guy but his hateful words about the LGBT community will now be confined to his weekly show on Fox News.”

Born in Glencoe, Ill., Karger came to California ostensibly to become an actor. Instead, in 1977, he became a political consultant for Republican campaigns and business clients, like Philip Morris.  He was closeted until becoming a gay activist in 2004 after his retirement at the Los Angeles based Dolphin Group which was founded by the late Bill Roberts who, along with Stu Spencer, ran Ronald Reagan’s successful 1966 race for governor.

Karger’s profile as an activist was elevated during the 2008 campaign against Proposition 8, which repealed a California Supreme Court ruling allowing same-sex marriages.

Californians Against Hate, a group Karger founded, launched four well-publicized boycotts of major donors to the “yes” campaign. Two donors, Bolthouse Farms and Garff Automotive, agreed to donate to gay and lesbian groups to end the boycotts.

Karger has particular antipathy toward the Mormon church and its opposition to same-sex marriage. When filing his papers last fall making his candidacy official, Karger described himself as the “anti-Romney candidate.” Romney is Mormon.

The skills Karger learned in public affairs and politics are evident in the conduct of his campaign. His apt but memorable campaign theme is “Fred Who?”

There’s a steady stream of emailed press releases, videos on YouTube and a growing amount of media attention.

Karger ran a television ad in New Hampshire and one in Iowa. Each for one week.

In a letter – circulated to the media – complaining to the Conservative Political Action Conference about being denied a speaking invitation, an exhibit booth or being included in the group’s candidate straw poll, Karger notes that he was recently profiled by the Washington Post, the first of any prospective 2012 GOP candidates.

He also says in the letter that he was the first candidate to establish an exploratory committee.

It seems doubtful Karger harbors any illusions that he will be behind the desk in the Oval Office come January 2013.

But he campaigns like he does. Glad-handing and handing out Frisbees like nobody’s business.

A swing through Iowa and Texas from April 25 through May 1 includes a radio show in Des Moines followed by a meet-and-greet at Iowa State in Ames. The following day it’s Drake University and on to Cedar Rapids and the next day back to Des Moines for more interviews and another meet-and-greet.

Then from Des Moines it’s three days in Dallas for the convention of Log Cabin Republicans, a national gay and lesbian GOP grassroots group.

At his appearances, Karger – a former actor like his “mentor” Ronald Reagan – is affable and cheery, looking a bit professorial in his tortoise shell glasses.

“I generally tell my story which is fairly compelling and unique having worked in Republican politics for years and being gay but always in the closet.”

He says his most exciting moment was a day at the Iowa State Fair last August.

“I spent the day in front of the Republican both handing out Frisbees and meeting people. It’s what I love – shaking hands and being out there.”  Other than marriage equality his platform is, at the moment, a bit skimpy.

The most tangible proposal is a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution lowering the voting age from 18 to allow 16-and 17-year-olds to vote. “That would do two things. One is give younger people – who are more informed and knowledgeable than I was because of the Internet – give them an opportunity to participate,” Karger says.

“And if 16-and 17-year-olds were allowed to learn about campaigns as they happen as opposed to campaigns from 100 years before, some might be more interested and less apt to drop out of high school.”

Now Karger is busy trying to raise more money. He’s spending half of his time in New Hampshire and looking for a house to rent so he can maximize his time there through the primary next February. Then on to Iowa.

“It’s an uphill battle but it’s going amazingly well.”

BBC News – HARDtalk: May 25, 2011

May 27, 2011

bbc logo

Fred Karger: First openly gay US presidential candidate

For link to story, Click Here

hardtalk image

Fred Karger is campaigning to be the next president of the United States.

Despite years of experience in the Reagan and Bush senior campaign teams, Mr Karger’s chances of winning the Republican nomination are, according to analysts, very slim.

But he remains determined to make history as the first openly gay candidate from a major political party to make a bid for the White House. Is this a stunt, or an important test of the United States’ commitment to equality?

He says his candidacy is about opening up the party to young people and reminding people not to “gay-bash” even if that means being the “elephant in the room” that no-one wants to discuss.

You can watch the full interview on BBC World News on Monday 23 May 2011 at 0330, 0830, 1530 and 2030 GMT and on BBC News Channel on 23 May at 0430 and 24 May at 0030 BST.

Update May 23, 2011

May 23, 2011

Contact: Rina Shah



Sacramento and Laguna Beach Fundraisers Set

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA – Fresh on the heels of a successful foreign trip where Fred met with Israeli government leaders and was the first Presidential candidate to be a guest on the prestigious BBC interview show HARDtalk, Californian Fred Karger returns home and will hold two California fundraisers in June.

Former State Senator Roy Ashburn will be honored on Wednesday, June 1, 2011 at a cocktail reception at Linda Kasem and Bob Nayor’s Sacramento loft:


You Are Cordially Invited to a Reception Honoring

The Honorable Roy Ashburn

At the home of the Honorable Robert Naylor & Linda Kasem

Sacramento, CA

(Address furnished upon ticket purchase)

Fred Karger for President

Co-Hosted by Chairman of the California Log Cabin Republicans

Leonard Lanzi

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

5:30 – 7:30 PM


Then on Sunday, June 19, 2011 there will be a cocktail reception at Fred’s home in Laguna Beach:


Fred Karger for President

Laguna Beach Fundraiser

You are Cordially Invited to be Part of History

Saturday, June 18, 2011

6:00 to 8:00 pm

(Address furnished upon ticket purchase)

Laguna Beach, CA 92651




Please support these important events so Fred can compete with the other candidates for President.  Make a contribution today.



Fred to appear on BBC World and BBC News

Fred had the honor of taping Stephen Sakur’s HARDtalk last week, and it will be broadcast on both BBC News and BBC World three times this Wednesday, May 25th and on line (Click Here).

Fred in the News 

Charleston City Paper

Uncovered Politics

Dallas Voice

Sunshine State News

New York Times

Outside the Beltway

N Y Times Polling Report

Huffington Post Live Blog Link

Des Moines Register

Uncovered Politics

Please help us continue to get our message out.  It is making a difference.  Send in a contribution today by clicking on the red button below.  Thank you for your support!