Politics

Grossman passes kidney stone during gubernatorial debate

Massachusetts Treasurer Steven Grossman.

AP File/2013

Massachusetts Treasurer Steven Grossman.

There were more than a few pained expressions worn by gubernatorial candidates during Tuesday night’s forum dedicated to issues affecting Massachusetts’s LGBTQ community, mostly after Scott Lively, an anti-gay candidate running to “advance a biblical world view,” responded to questions.

But state Treasurer Steve Grossman, who is a Democrat from Newton, was actually in physical pain, said campaign spokesman Chandra Allard. Grossman was in the throes of passing a kidney stone, something often compared to the pain of childbirth, during the 90-minute debate, she said.

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The forum was held by MassEquality and WGBH at the Boston Public Library in Copley Square and included eight gubernatorial candidates -- the five Democrats and three independents, all of whom showed their support for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community except for Lively.

Grossman’s pain-level was a 10 on a scale of 1-to-10, Allard said, and yet he fervently answered questions on everything from transgender rights and mandatory sex education to issues facing youth and aging members of the LGBTQ community.

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Grossman has suffered chronic kidney stones, getting them on and off for the last 30 years, said Allard. He woke up in pain at 3:45 a.m. Tuesday morning, but she said he insisted on continuing with the day, which included attending GetKonnected’s Diversity Game Changer Awards ceremony after the forum ended.

Word of Grossman’s stone -- which has inspired a parody Twitter account -- spread via the micro-blogging website, as did the news that he finally passed the stone, sometime during the awards ceremony.

“I’m grateful that I made it out, but I know some of my fellow stones remain confined. We must #FreeTheStones! #mapoli,”@grossmansstone tweeted Wednesday morning.

Akilah Johnson can be reached at ajohnson@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @akjohnson1922.
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