An estimated 350 people turned out at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel on Friday evening, June 25 at a fund-raising event where Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry reached out to gay and lesbian New York voters. Referring to the efforts by the Republicans to pass a constitutional amendment to bar same-sex marriage, Kerry told the crowd, “The American family I know won’t stand for the politics of fear and distortion. We won’t stand for those who want to amend our Constitution for political purposes.” Kerry, however, has voiced support for an effort to amend the Massachusetts Constitution to end same-sex marriage there as long as civil unions are enacted instead. Joined by former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean and Broadway star Harvey Fierstein, Kerry also reminded the audience of his opposition to the ban on openly gay and lesbian military servicemembers. “The gay Americans I know have served their country proudly in times of war,” he said.