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An Irish politician hoping to become head of the European Parliament's LGBT Intergroup is targeting the one place she knows her demographic frequents: Grindr. Phil Prendergast, an Irish MEP, is advertising her campaign on the gay dating app with pop-up ads that urge Irish Grindr members to vote her No 1 in the upcoming European Parliament elections.
"I have been one of the loudest voices in the European Parliament on LGBT issues such as homophobic and transphobic bullying, and marriage equality," she said. "I think the importance of having an Irish voice lead the Intergroup is underscored by the fact that in 2015 we will hold the first positively-worded referendum in the world – giving people the option of legalising as opposed to banning – gay marriage."
Prendergast is not the only politican to have joined Grindr to connect with voters. Last month, the democratic Dutch politicians Jan-Bert Vroege and Pieter Rietman signed up for the app. Speaking to Reuters, the openly gay Vroege said "We are very fond of new technology and new media. We are also into making Amsterdam a lively gay destination – and using Grindr we can get that message to all the gay people of Amsterdam."
This willingness to embrace both technology and LGBT communities indicates a positive swing in the minds of politicians, and comes shortly after the UK's first same–sex marriages.
What would you do if you found David Cameron on Tinder?
Follow Thomas Gorton on Twitter here @angstromhoot