On Thursday, James C. Hormel, Ambassador to Luxembourg and an openly gay man, said there is “no truth” to Attorney General designate John Ashcroft’s statement that “he had any objective basis or personal knowledge upon which to vote against my nomination.” During his Senate Confirmation hearing testimony, Ashcroft said that he based his decision not to confirm Hormel on the totality of his record an included that he had “known Mr. Hormel for a long time.”
Hormel disavowed Ashcroft’s testimony, saying, “Let me be very clear about the facts: I cannot recall ever in my life having a conversation with Mr. Ashcroft. I have had absolutely no contact with him in almost 34 years.”
Hormel’s’ contradiction of Ashcroft’s testimony is not the only evidence regarding Ashcroft’s use of sexual preference as a hiring or appointment criteria. Paul Offner, a health care policy expert who applied to head Missouri’s Department of Social Services in 1985, said Ashcroft asked him about his sexual orientation during the interview. Throughout his testimony, Ashcroft said he would not and did not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation in hiring.