Joe Biden Has Tense Exchange Over L.G.B.T.Q. Record – The New York Times

The focus on candidates’ past departures from contemporary progressive politics stemmed in large part from the lack of daylight between most of the major candidates on issues of L.G.B.T.Q. equality: nearly all back banning conversion therapy for minors; rolling back the spread of rules that allow religious businesses to decline serving L.G.B.T.Q. customers; and ending the Trump administration transgender military ban. Most have promised to pass the Equality Act, legislation opposed by the White House that would bolster the list of protected classes under civil rights law to include discrimination based on “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.”

“It’s about time we had a woke president on these issues,” Senator Cory Booker said, “so we see everyone for the equal dignity and equal citizenship we all have.”

The candidates boasted about their accomplishments — large and small — on behalf of L.G.B.T.Q Americans.

Mr. Booker noted that as mayor of Newark, he had vowed not to officiate any weddings until everyone had the right to wed. Senator Elizabeth Warren opened her appearance by reading the names of 18 trans women of color who have been killed this year.

Mr. Biden said he has been sympathetic to same-sex couples since he was a boy, when, he said, he and his father witnessed two men kissing while disembarking from the train station in Wilmington, Del.

“He said, ‘Joey, it’s simple,’” Mr. Biden said. “They love each other.”

In a historically diverse field, the L.G.B.T.Q. community has celebrated their own record-breaking first: Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., the first openly gay man to mount a major campaign for president.


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