Senate Dems urge DOJ to reinstate trans protections under Title VII

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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A group of 44 Senate Democrats led by Sens. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Al Franken (D-Minn.) urged the Justice Department on Thursday to reinstate its interpretation of existing civil rights law to prohibit anti-transgender discrimination.

In a letter dated Nov. 2, the Senate Democrats insist Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits sex discrimination in the workplace, also applies to discrimination against transgender workers.

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We look at St. Petersburg’s (partisan) non-partisan primary mayoral race between Baker and Kriseman

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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On August 29, St. Petersburg could choose its next mayor. According to the Pinellas County supervisor of elections, 169,770 residents of the city will be eligible to vote in the upcoming primary election, meaning that 169,770 residents of the Sunshine City will have one of three choices that day.

First, to elect the next mayor. Second, to send two candidates to a run-off election in November, should no one receive 50 percent plus one of the vote. Or third, to stay home and let every other eligible voter decide on their behalf.

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LGBTQ rights is personal for Florida gubernatorial candidates

By : Wire Report
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – The leading Democrats running for Florida governor met with gay and lesbian party members on Aug. 19 in an event that at times was touching and personal, and served as a reminder that Florida is a place where people can still be discriminated against because of who they love.

Perhaps the most chilling moment was when Orlando-area businessman Chris King described his brother as a brilliant, handsome man who would light up a room as soon as he walked in. But his brother was gay, and Florida wasn’t a tolerant place when they were growing up in the 1970s and 1980s. He struggled with depression.

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62 lawmakers blast anti-gay DOJ filing in bicameral letter

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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A group of 62 Democrats from both chambers of Congress is blasting the U.S. Justice Department for a recent court filing arguing lesbians, gays and bisexuals have no protections under existing federal civil rights law.

In a letter dated Aug. 7 and made public Tuesday, the lawmakers assert the Justice Department’s recent friend-of-the-court brief in the case of Zarda V. Altitude Express is “not only contrary to existing law, but violates our nation’s ideals of liberty and justice for all.”

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The Other Side of Life: Totem polls

By : Jason Leclerc
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Jason Leclerc

Who might have imagined that the irrelevance of Hollywood would become a totem to the nation writ large in the age of Trump? When I say totem, of course, I intend to conjure images of poles: the biggest poles, polls that now accurately misstate everything from presidential popularity to Academy Award winners.

We are pole-driven, metaphor-driven partisans who have bought into cults of personality if only for the fleeting moments needed to crush other cults. In 2017, we pit irrelevant reality stars against their replacements as if one were the President of the United States and the other were the former governor of California.

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Schumer: Dems will ‘do whatever we can’ to reverse trans rollback

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) was bold Tuesday in declaring opposition to the Trump administration’s rollback of guidance prohibiting discrimination against transgender kids, but kept his cards close to his vest on his plan to address the reversal.

Schumer made the remarks during his weekly news conference on Capitol Hill in response to a question from the Washington Blade on when Senate Democrats intend to respond to President Trump’s revocation of the Obama-era guidance.

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As Obama accomplished policy goals, his party floundered

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) – In boasting about his tenure in the White House, President Barack Obama often cites numbers like these: 15 million new jobs, a 4.9 percent unemployment rate and 74 months of consecutive job growth.

There’s one number you will almost never hear: More than 1,030 seats.

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GOP keeps Senate control as Democrats fall short

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) – Republicans held onto their slim Senate majority, a stinging blow to Democrats in a night full of them. Democrats had been nearly certain of retaking control but saw their hopes fizzle as endangered GOP incumbents won in Missouri, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and even Democrat-friendly Wisconsin.

GOP-held New Hampshire remained too close to call in the early morning hours Nov. 9, but even if Democrats eked out a win there it would not make a difference.

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LGBTQ Voting Rally on Sunday! It’s your last chance to be early!

By : Billy Manes
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We are aware of the symptoms of exhaustion. We, likewise, have the vapors and the terrors in equal measure as Nov. 8 approaches. What if it all goes wrong? What if we’re all ruined by a megalomaniac whose interests lie solely in his swish of hair and swap of values, his latest wife and latest strife.

It’s not OK. We’ve done almost as much as we can to encourage your suffrage, but, just in case, there is a souls-to-the-polls-style voting rally happening this weekend, and we thought you should know about it.

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LGBTQ hopefuls face steep odds in bids for Congress

By : CHRIS JOHNSON, Washington Blade
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A plethora of non-incumbent openly LGBTQ candidates is seeking election to Congress this year, but a look at the polls reveals many of them are facing an uphill climb.

The Washington Blade identified 10 openly LGBTQ non-incumbent candidates running for seats in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate in 2016, including two candidates who are the first-ever openly transgender people to win nominations from a major U.S. political party, two openly gay Republicans and a candidate who’d be the first out lesbian with children elected to Congress.

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Senate Democrats aim to block LGBT measure from defense bill

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) – Senate Democrats are intent on scuttling a House-passed provision that they say would undercut protections against workplace discrimination based on sexual or gender orientation.

In a letter delivered Tuesday to the leaders of the Armed Services committees, the lawmakers called the measure dangerous and urged that it not be included in the annual defense policy bill. They said the provision would amount to government-sponsored discrimination by permitting religiously affiliated federal contractors to refuse to interview a job candidate whose faith differs from theirs and to fire employees who marry their same-sex partners or use birth control.

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Montana Democrat hopes to be state’s first openly gay Congresswoman

By : Wire Report
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GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) – Denise Juneau says electing her to Congress would change the discourse about LGBT people.

The Democrat made her comments Oct. 5 in a debate against Republican U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke and Libertarian Rick Breckenridge before a capacity crowd at Great Falls College.

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