AFL-CIO president resigns from Trump manufacturing council

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Tuesday resigned from President Trump’s manufacturing council.

Trumka in a statement said he and AFL-CIO Deputy Chief of Staff Thea Lee, who was also a member of the council, “cannot sit on a council for a president who tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism.

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Former State Representative Joe Saunders returns to Equality Florida as Senior Political Director

By : Jeremy Williams
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Florida’s largest LGBTQ civil rights organization, Equality Florida announced Aug. 9 that former State Representative Joe Saunders would be rejoining the staff as the new Senior Political Director.

Saunders previously held the position of Field Director with Equality Florida for nearly a decade before running for, and winning, a seat in the Florida House of Representatives in 2012. Saunders, along with Miami Beach’s David Richardson, became the first openly gay Floridians elected to the legislature.

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Transgender woman fatally shot in Georgia

By : Wire Report
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COLLEGE PARK, Ga. (AP) – A transgender woman who was shot just outside Atlanta has died.

College Park police Maj. Lance Patterson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that 32-year-old Troy “TeeTee” Dangerfield was shot in her car outside an apartment complex in College Park early morning July 31. She was found suffering from multiple gunshot wounds and taken to Grady Memorial Hospital, where she later died.

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New Trump communications chief Scaramucci backs LGBT rights

By : Chris Johnson of the Washingston Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Marking an unusual shift for the Trump administration, the new White House communications chief has declared support for LGBT rights and professed to have donated to LGBT groups.

Anthony Scaramucci, a prominent New York financier, was named White House communications director on Friday, pledging during a news conference to work to reshape Trump’s image amid widespread disapproval of his administration.

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Rhode Island becomes 10th state to ban ‘ex-gay’ therapy

By : Chris Johnson of the Washingston Blade, Courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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The governor of Rhode Island signed into law Wednesday a measure that bans widely discredited “ex-gay” conversion therapy for minors, the 10th state in the nation with such a prohibition.

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, a Democrat, announced on Twitter she signed the measure via a retweet of a Human Rights Campaign sticker declaring “victory for LGBT youth in Rhode Island.”

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Trumpcare appears defeated, but LGBT opponents remain wary

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: President Trump poses in cab of firetruck on day GOP support for Trumpcare crumbles. (Image courtesy of C-SPAN)

After Republican support crumbled for Trumpcare, LGBT advocacy groups that sought to preserve the Affordable Care Act are quietly confident it will remain in place — although they say they’re keeping a watchful eye.

Late Monday night, two Republicans — Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) — announced they’d vote “no” on the latest version of the Better Care Reconciliation Act proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). With Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) already opposed to the bill, the defections of Lee and Moran assured defeat of the bill if it came to the floor.

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Human Rights Campaign launches $26M campaign ahead of midterms

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) – The Human Rights Campaign, one of the nation’s leading gay rights groups, is launching a $26 million political organizing effort ahead of next year’s midterm elections.

While the effort is nationwide, the group is focusing its resources in particular on several key states: Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Nevada. All six states are expected to have competitive Senate races next fall, and each is a presidential battleground.

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HRC to Trump: Ask Putin about Chechnya anti-gay abuses

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Ahead of a scheduled bilateral meeting between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, the largest LGBT group in the United States is calling on Trump to “forcefully raise” reports of anti-gay human rights abuses in Chechnya.

In a letter dated July 5, Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said bringing up the issue of anti-gay violence in Chechnya with Putin is “imperative” in the aftermath of reports that more than 100 men perceived as gay or bisexual have been detained and tortured.

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The Good Fight: Looking beyond the memorials

By : Chad Griffin
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At the stroke of noon on June 12, churches from Ecuador to Michigan will ring their bells 49 times in memory of the lives lost at Pulse Nightclub one year ago. This moment will honor the remarkable people taken that night – and mourn the lives that were tragically cut short.

Luis S. Vielma, 22, worked at Universal Orlando’s Harry Potter ride and was set to start Emergency Medical Technician training just weeks after the massacre.

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Chad Griffin urges U.S. to grant visas to gay Chechen men

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin on Monday described reports that the U.S. has discouraged Russian LGBT rights advocates from helping men who have fled anti-gay persecution in Chechnya apply for visas as “greatly disturbing.”

Griffin in a letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wrote that while he understands “it is indeed difficult for them to obtain U.S. visas, it is imperative that the U.S. immediately take every possible step to help the victims find their way safely — and to clearly communicate that the U.S. is pursuing every option, so that the victims do not lose hope.”

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‘Eyes on Chechnya’ protest targets Russian ambassador

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Protesters gathered before the D.C. residence of the Russian ambassador to the United States on Tuesday to call on Russia to investigate reports of anti-gay abuses and concentration camps in Chechnya and bring them to an end.

An estimated 75 people gathered before the residence of Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak in a demonstration organized by the Human Rights Campaign intended to highlight the arrests and detentions of gay and bisexual men in the semi-autonomous Republic.

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Anti-LGBT state senator withdraws nomination for Army Secretary

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Mark E. Green, who President Trump nominated last month to be Secretary of the Army, withdrew from contention for the position on Friday following a month-long campaign by LGBT advocacy groups to publicize his anti-LGBT record as a Tennessee state senator.

His withdrawal came less than a week after the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights group, said it generated 6,800 calls to Congress from constituents strongly opposing Green’s nomination.

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