Buddy Cianci in RI Supreme Court Firefighter’s Gay Pride Parade Lawsuit

 Twitter:  @markcurtisABC6 

email: mcurtis@abc6.com  

Former Mayor Buddy Cianci walked out of court dealing with a legal matter from 13 years ago.

No it wasn’t Plunderdome.

Instead this was a suit filed by two Providence firefighters, who were told to drive a fire truck in that year’s Gay Pride Parade, something they objected to.

Cianci called it the fair thing to do.

“And how could I say to the Gay Pride Committee, ‘Oh you can’t have a fire truck, but the Purim people on the East Side, they can have one. And if the Columbus Day people want one, they can have one,” said Cianci, (I) Candidate for Providence Mayor.

Those firefighters want financial damages from the city, saying it was their right to object to riding in the gay parade, on religious grounds.

“We do not believe that the officials involved are entitled to be immune from liability because we believe, they were violating our firefighters Constitutional Rights,” said Gina DiCenso, a lawyer for the Providence Firefighters.

The state Supreme Court heard the case, but made no decision yet.

ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis said, “Now Buddy Cianci insists he had nothing to do with the scheduling of the Supreme Court hearing and that is probably true. But given the timing of the political season, he’ll try to take full advantage.

Cianci says he’s always had strong support in the Providence gay community.

“I’ve been an advocate for gay marriage, and I was the first Mayor – in certainly Rhode Island, maybe even the county – to give domestic partners Blue Cross if they worked for the city.”

But Cianci will have to fight for that group.

Former Mayoral candidate Brett Smiley – who is openly gay – is backing Jorge Elorza.