'Let's Remember 2018'
Warns Progress That 'We Celebrated and Maybe Even Took for Granted May Not Be as Secure as We Once Expected'
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Hillary Clinton is clearly not done with politics. The former Secretary of State and Democratic presidential nominee is back, speaking out, and working to help the Democratic party.
At a fundraiser for New York City's well-known LGBT community center, The Center, Clinton blasted her former opponent, now-President Donald Trump, on a variety of issues, but especially LGBT rights.
“We have to face the fact that we may not ever be able to count on this administration to lead on LGBT issues,” Clinton told attendees at Thursday's event, which NBC News reports raised $1.75 million for the LGBT group.
Thank you for an incredible evening. We're thrilled to announce over $1.75 million raised to support the LGBT community! pic.twitter.com/78A93EDCov— The Center (@LGBTCenterNYC) April 21, 2017
"Each time this administration elevates an outspoken opponent of LGBT equality — sometimes in particularly cruel ways like replacing the first openly gay Secretary of the Army with someone who called being transgender a 'disease' — I picture all of the joyful, beaming couples that I've met across our country … who are so excited to get married, start a family, and begin their lives together," Clinton, referring to Trump nominee Mark Green, who has yet to be confirmed.
"We may not ever be able to count on this administration to lead on LGBT issues. Let's remember 2018—the midterm elections."—Hillary Clinton pic.twitter.com/lqH2banheJ— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) April 21, 2017
And she demanded the Trump administration do more to stop what are reportedly concentration camps in Russia's Chechnya, where gay men are being detained, tortured, and murdered.
"It's not just here in our country that we're seeing clouds gathering on the horizon," Clinton told donors at Cipriani on Wall Street, a popular event space and restaurant. "We've heard terrifying accounts from Chechnya of gay and bisexual men being taken from their homes and families, tortured, even killed. The US government — yes, this government — must demand an end to the persecution of gay men in Russia."
Clinton, who was awarded the group's Trailblazer Award, also slammed Trump for his administration's revoking of President Barack Obama's transgender guidance, that protects trans school children and adults.
"My heart broke for all the parents who are advocating so fiercely for their child's right to live, learn and go to school just like anybody else," she said.
Clinton also spoke on the eradication of HIV/AIDS, a program she championed.
"I thought of all our efforts to try to achieve an AIDS-free generation, and we were on the way," she said, noting the Trump administration's desire to cut funding. "We can, if we stay on that path, finally realize that dream — but not if we are forced off."
"I know that the election hit a lot of us hard," Clinton said, somewhat jokingly. "But I can tell you this, even when it feels tempting to pull the covers over your head, please keep going."
She warned that on LGBT rights, "the progress that we fought for ... that we celebrated and maybe even took for granted may not be as secure as we once expected."
“Let’s remember 2018, the midterm elections," she added, as Politico notes, saying winning elections is "the only way to to make it clear where our country stands" on LGBT civil rights.
"We need to resist, insist, persist and enlist and make sure our voices and our votes count," she said. "So we’re going to keep fighting together side by side for equal rights. And we’re going to make sure that nobody turns the clock back on what we’ve achieved as Americans."
Clinton concluded by noting, "As I said in 2011, gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights."
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