Steve Wiles, a Republican state Senate candidate who supported North Carolina’s constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, performed in drag at a gay nightclub a little over a decade ago.
The co-owner of the former Club Odyssey and a former employee both told the Winston-Salem Journal that the now anti-gay crusader Steve Wiles was openly gay when he worked at the nightclub as Miss Mona Sinclair.
Wiles is now a real-estate agent and Republican activist. He’s running in a May 6 Republican primary against two other candidates in the solidly red state Senate district.
In addition to performing as a female impersonator, Wiles served as the show’s director and emcee. He was also the promoter of Miss Gay Eastern States America and Miss Gay North Carolina America. A webpage, which has since been deleted, said Wiles was suspended from those positions for “conduct unbecoming to a promoter of the Miss Gay America pageant system.”
Wiles at first denied the revelation about his past, but later asked a reporter, “Why is it even an issue?”
When another reporter asked Wiles about his support for the state’s 2012 anti-gay amendment, Wiles said he still strongly supports it.
“I do not condone the things I did when I was young,” Wiles said, declining to elaborate further about his past.