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22 LGBT Advances That (Probably) Will Disappear Under A President Romney

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Under a President Mitt Romney, there are at least 22 advances in LGBT civil rights delivered by President Barack Obama that most likely will disappear. While Nancy Pelosi and, to a far lesser extent, Harry Reid, have worked to support civil rights and protections for the gay community, Barack Obama has — sometimes with great fanfare, oftentimes in the shadows — delivered important advances.

Back in 2010, at Change.org, I wrote a somewhat controversial (at the time) article, “Obama’s Gay Rights Come With An Expiration Date,” which stated:

President Obama should know better than to incrementalize gay rights, and tie them to his presidency. And yet, that’s exactly what he’s doing.

President Obama has slowly and quietly doled out rights to the LGBTQ community. These are rights we should have by the very nature of our existence, rights that every other American has upon birth, but the president has doled them out cautiously, meekly, without pomp or circumstance, and, worse, he has tied them to his presidency.

This tactic is problematic for two reasons.

First, by expanding our civil rights by issuing executive orders and memoranda, President Obama’s gay civil rights come with an expiration date. Yes, that’s right. The rights he has decreed, without working through Congress, are tied to his presidency. Any of his successors can, simply with the stroke of a pen, wipe out all our hard-earned rights, just because he or she wants to. Do you honestly think the next Republican president won’t do that?

Today, the Washington Blade’s Chris Johnson posts a long list of 21 LGBT advances a President Romney could — with the stroke of a pen or incrementally — make disappear into a more progressive history.

Asking, “Would President Romney undo pro-LGBT advances?,” Johnson notes:

Many of the pro-LGBT advances that have happened under the Obama administration occurred through changes made by the executive branch rather than through legislation. Changes that were made without the consent of Congress could be reversed under an administration that wanted to cozy up to the religious right.

The Washington Blade has identified five regulatory changes and 16 sub-regulatory changes enacted by the Obama administration that could be reversed if Romney were elected to the White House. These changes include giving greater recognition to same-sex couples, protecting federal LGBT workers against discrimination and ensuring the federal government recognizes the correct gender of transgender people.

The one Johnson doesn’t include in his list of “five regulatory changes and 16 sub-regulatory changes” is the most-obvious: Obama’s support of same-sex marriage equality.

Here’s the list from the Blade:

Regulations

The Administrative Procedures Act provides safeguards against politically motivated policy switches. Thus repealing the policies below would involve a multi-year process.

  • The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) adopted a regulation ending the ban on HIV-positive visitors and immigrants.
  • President Obama issued Presidential Memorandum in April 2010 directing HHS to issue regulations requiring all hospitals receiving Medicaid and Medicare to prohibit discrimination in visitation against LGBT people. HHS issued a final regulation that went into effect in early 2011.
  • HUD issued final regulations in January 2012 prohibiting discrimination in federal public housing programs and federally insured mortgage loans.  HUD also requires its grantees to comply with LGBT-inclusive state and local housing discrimination protections.
  • The Office of Personnel Management published final regulations in the Federal Register expanding the eligibility for long-term care coverage to same-sex partners and sick leave to care for a same-sex partner.
  •  The federal Prison Rape Elimination Commission proposed national standards to reduce sexual abuse in correctional facilities, including standards regarding LGBT and intersex inmates. They were later instituted as a rule finalized by the Justice Department last month.

Sub-Regulatory Guidance/Policy Announcements

These are policy advances instituted by — and subject to the will of — the administration.

  • The Department of Health and Human Services revised its funding guidance around abstinence-only-until-marriage sex education programs, requiring that recipient programs are inclusive of and non-stigmatizing toward LGBT youth.
  • HHS, in partnership with the Department of Education and Department of Justice, launched stopbullyingnow.com.
  • The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency recently released new 2011 Performance Based National Detention Standards.  These new standards provide guidance that aims to improve treatment of LGBT and HIV-positive people in detention facilities.
  • In summer 2011, ICE published a memo and clarifying guidance providing that an individual’s family relationships, including a same-sex relationship, would be considered as a factor in labeling certain deportations as low-priority deportations.
  • The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol announced a proposed regulatory change expanding the meaning of “members of a family residing in one household” for the purposes of the customs declaration form, which must be completed prior to re-entry to the United States.
  • The DOJ issued an opinion clarifying that the criminal provisions of the Violence Against Women Act related to stalking and abuse apply equally to same-sex partners.
  • The State Department revised the standards for changing a gender marker on a passport, making the process less burdensome for transgender people.
  • In September 2011, the Social Security Administration confirmed that it ended the practice of allowing gender to be matched in its Social Security Number Verification System (SSNVS). This resulted in the immediate cessation of SSA sending notifications that alert employers when the gender marker on an employee’s W-2 does not match Social Security records.
  • The State Department extended numerous benefits to the partners of Foreign Service officers, including diplomatic passports and access to emergency evacuation.
  • The State Department reversed a Bush administration policy that refused to use a same-sex marriage license as evidence of a name change for passports.
  • The Department of Education issued guidance clarifying when student bullying may violate federal law, distributed a memo outlining key components of strong state anti-bullying laws and policies and made clear to public schools that gay-straight alliances have a right to form and meet.
  • The Department of Education published guidance and, in coordination with the Department of Justice, has pursued Title IX complaints filed by LGBT students experiencing harassment based on sex or sex stereotyping.
  • OPM added gender identity to the equal employment opportunity policy governing all federal jobs.
  • The Department of Labor issued guidance clarifying that an employee can take time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act to care for a same-sex partner’s child.
  • The IRS clarified that domestic partners (and their children) can be designated beneficiaries for VEBA funding/payment purposes.
  • The Census Bureau overturned the Bush administration’s interpretation of the Defense of Marriage Act and agreed to release data on married same-sex couples along with other demographic information from the 2010 Census.

SOURCE: HRC

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RIGHT WING HYPOCRISY

McEnany Lectures Biden: ‘It’s the Role of the President of the United States to Stay Back, to Not Inflame’

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Former White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Tuesday blasted President Joe Biden for speaking out about the Derek Chauvin trial even though her former boss, Donald Trump, often expressed his opinion on similar events.

After the sequestered jury began its deliberations in the Chauvin trial, Biden told reporters that he was praying for the “right verdict.”

McEnany, in her role as Fox News host, criticized the current president.

“I’m glad that he at least waited until the jury was sequestered,” McEnany ranted. “But I think that the country is such a tinderbox right now, especially Minneapolis. There’s so much hurt, so much pain.”

And I think it’s the role of the president of the United States to stay back, to not inflame the tensions,” she added. “I think he should have just reserved comment and said he’s praying for the family as we all are.”

As president, Trump often weighed in on legal matters and controversial events.

After Kyle Rittenhouse was charged with homicide for shootings that left two protesters in Wisconsin dead last August, Trump offered a defense of the suspect.

“He was trying to get away from them, I guess, it looks like,” Trump opined at the time. “I guess he was in very big trouble. He probably would have been killed.”

Watch the video below from Fox News.

 

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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ANALYSIS

Republicans Planning to Force Censure Vote Against Maxine Waters – Here’s How It Could Backfire: Report

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Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is set on forcing a vote in the House on his resolution to censure Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA). There’s little chance it will pass, and Democrats might be able to block it before he’s able to force a vote, but regardless it very easily could backfire against them, according to Politico.

Republicans in the House and Senate are claiming to be furious after Waters went to Minnesota to talk with Black Lives Matter protestors and told them if former police officer Derek Chauvin is not found guilty of killing George Floyd they must “stay on the street” and become “more confrontational.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is falsely claiming Waters is inciting violence, and she’s moving to expel the California Democrat, which also will not happen.

Others, like House Republican Minority Whip Steve Scalise, on Tuesday falsely claimed Waters was “trying to incite violence and, in fact, there is violence going on right now in Minnesota because of her actions.”

Republicans are trying to inflate Waters’ comments and use them against Democrats. The National Republican Congressional Committee “is already planning to use this vote to tie moderate Democrats to Waters, according to spokesman Michael Mcadams,” Politico reports.

Politico says if Republicans go ahead with this plan it “could also trigger Democratic action as well.”

Many House Democrats are still furious about the January 6 insurrection, and that they’re forced to work “alongside apologists to an insurrection.”

“Tensions remain high in the House after Jan. 6, with Democrats privately lamenting that they’re working alongside apologists to an insurrection. Democratic leadership has privately worked to persuade many of these frustrated members to hold back on forcing votes rebuking their GOP colleagues to try to lower the temperature in Washington. They may be less restrained after the GOP-led vote on Waters.”

Democrats could force action against some of the extremists, or resuscitate what had appeared to be an all-but-dead January 6 House Commission, something Speaker Pelosi just brought up again, as did a New York Times editorial board member.

 

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LOL - NOPE!

‘Making Up Numbers Now?’: Grassley Scorched for Saying Moving All-Star Game Out of Atlanta Cost ‘100 Million Jobs’

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U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) is claiming Major League Baseball‘s decision to move the All-Star Game out of Atlanta will cost the city “100 million jobs.” There are just over 150 million Americans who are currently employed, so the Iowa Republicans Senator is claiming that effectively, two-thirds of working Americans will lose their jobs because of the move, which is false.

Major League Baseball pulled the game out of Atlanta in response to Republican Governor Brian Kemp signing what has been called “one of the most restrictive and dangerous anti-voter bills in the country.”

But the game is moving to Colorado, so there would be no jobs lost.

Senator Grassley is wrong. He might have been listening to an April 5 Fox News report, which claimed pulling out of Atlanta cost the city $100 million, but actual experts disagree, with one saying the amount is “a whole lot closer to zero than the $100m number Atlanta was throwing.”

The Guardian reports “Georgia’s $100m figure surely makes for a juicy cable-news chyron, the consensus among sports economists is these estimates are routinely exaggerated.”

“The rule of thumb that I always tell everyone,” economics professor Victor Matheson told The Guardian, “is just take whatever number the boosters are telling you, move the decimal one place to the left and you’ve probably got a pretty good guess.”

Grassley is getting scorched.

 

 

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