Tom Perez on Trump’s Attacks on the LGBTQ Community
July 27, 2017
In response to the Trump administration’s unprecedented actions to reverse LGBTQ rights, DNC Chair Tom Perez released this statement:
“The modern movement for LGBTQ equality in the United States, which started at the Stonewall Inn in 1969, faced overwhelming hate and ignorance from much of the public and our government. But thanks to the activists and allies who marched against oppression, our country has changed enormously, especially in the last decade. Today, Americans can marry whom they love and more members of the LGBTQ community have the freedom to live their lives openly.
“Now, Donald Trump, Mike Pence, and their cabinet are working overtime to shove LGBTQ people back in the closet. They’ve retracted the Department of Education’s guidance to help schools protect the civil rights of transgender students, they’ve argued in court that a landmark civil rights law doesn’t protect gay people from discrimination in the workplace, and now Trump is trying to ban transgender Americans from serving our military without the consultation of the most senior Department of Defense officials.
“The Democratic Party is dedicated to the advancement of equal rights for all. We will not tolerate these attacks on the LGBTQ community and we will fight tooth and nail to resist the White House’s bigoted actions.
Here are some of the Trump administration’s most recent anti-LGBTQ actions:
7/26/17 – Trump announced, without informing the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a ban on transgender people serving in the armed forces.
Associated Press: “President Donald Trump is barring transgender people from serving in the military ‘in any capacity,’ citing ‘tremendous medical costs and disruption.’ Trump’s announcement Wednesday morning on Twitter did not say what would happen to transgender people already in the military.”
CNN: “The Joint Chiefs of Staff, including chairman General Joseph Dunford, were not aware President Donald Trump planned to tweet a ban on transgender service members…top military leaders across all four service branches were blindsided by the President's announcement.”
7/26/17 – The DOJ weighed into a private employment lawsuit to argue it is legal to fire employees based on sexual orientation.
New York Times: “The Department of Justice has filed court papers arguing that a major federal civil rights law does not protect employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation in a case now being considered by a New York appeals court.”
BuzzFeed: “The Justice Department Just Argued Against Gay Rights In A Major Federal Case”
New York Times: “The Department’s Decision To File A Brief In The Case Was A Rare Example Of Top Officials In Washington Weighing In On Gay Rights In What Is An Important But Essentially Private Dispute Between A Worker And His Boss.”
7/26/17 – Trump’s nominated the vehemently anti-LGBTQ Governor of Kansas, Sam Brownback, for “Ambassador-At-Large For International Religious Freedom.”
Kansas City Star: “President Donald Trump has appointed Gov. Sam Brownback to an ambassadorship, a little more than a month after the Kansas governor saw his signature tax policy dismantled by the state’s Legislature.”
The Advocate: “Trump Just Nominated An Anti-LGBT ‘Ambassador For Religious Freedom’”
7/27/2017 – Trump nominates Pete Hoekstra, a former congressman with an anti-LGBTQ voting record, for ambassador to the Netherlands.
Newsweek: “Pete Hoekstra, an ex-Congressman and member of the conservative Tea Party movement, is President Donald Trump’s pick for ambassador to the Netherlands… But his views on gay rights put him at odds with the first country to legalize same-sex unions.”
Mike Pence and his staff have been lobbying aggressively for anti-transgender legislation.
Foreign Policy: “Vice President Mike Pence And His Staff Have Been Working Quietly To Get Congress To Roll Back The Defense Department’s Year-Old Policy Covering Medical Procedures For Transitioning Service Members.”
Foreign Policy: Pence And His Staff Lobbied Members Of The House To Support Representative Hartzler’s Initiative To Include A Ban On Funding For Gender Transition-Related Medical Treatment In The Defense Spending Bill.
7/11/17 – Jeff Sessions gave a closed-door speech to the anti-LGBTQ organization Alliance Defending Freedom.
ABC News: “Sessions addressed members of the Alliance Defending Freedom, which was designated an ‘anti-LGBT hate group’ by the Southern Poverty Law Center in 2016.”