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LGBTQ+ Issues

It’s this simple — members of the LGBTQ+ community deserve the same rights and equality under the law as all other Americans. Period. The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, which ruled that same-sex couples have the fundamental right to marry, was a watershed moment in the battle for LGBTQ+ rights; but as we know from the civil rights and women’s movements before it, we can’t rest there.

To achieve — and protect — true equality for LGBTQ+ Americans, we need to fight all types of institutionalized discrimination, whether in schools, workplaces, housing, or anywhere else in our communities. To start, let’s do the following:

Pass the Equality Act into law. I am proud to be a member of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus and an original cosponsor of the Equality Act — landmark legislation to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity and ensure that all LGBTQ+ Americans are granted the full protections guaranteed by federal civil rights law. I will never wave in my support for this legislation and, while we have passed it in the House of Representatives, I’ll continue to lead the effort to get it passed through the Senate and signed into law once and for all.

Keep our military strong. Anyone — gay, straight, or transgender — who wants to put their life on the line to defend our freedoms should never be denied their own opportunity to serve. I grew up in a military family — my Dad served for decades in the Air Force — so this is personal to me.

Be a world leader. The United States should be a moral leader for the world on LGBTQ+ issues, fighting against bigotry and intolerance. That’s why I am a proud cosponsor of the Global Respect Act, which would block those who persecute LGBTQ+ people around the world from entering the United States. As a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, I will continue to use my platform to advocate for the rights of LGBTQ communities everywhere they come under attack.

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