Senate blocks vote on Gillibrand amendment to protect trans troops

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: The amendment Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) filed against Trump’s transgender military ban won’t get a vote. (Washington Blade file photo by Damien Salas)

Despite bipartisan support, an amendment proposed by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) that would have undermined President Trump’s ban on transgender military service won’t get a vote in the U.S. Senate, the Washington Blade has learned.

A Senate Democratic leadership aide said the Senate didn’t have unanimous consent and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was unwilling to file cloture to force a vote. Gillibrand proposed the amendment, which was co-sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), as part of the fiscal year 2018 defense authorization bill.

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LGBT immigrants among DREAMers facing uncertainty

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Tony Choi is an undocumented immigrant who obtained relief under DACA. (Photo courtesy Tony Choi)

In the aftermath of President Trump’s decision to nix an Obama-era immigration program allowing young, undocumented immigrants to stay in the United States, Tony Choi doesn’t know his fate — but realizes one possibility is he’ll be deported to South Korea.

Speaking to the Washington Blade by phone while taking part in a rally just outside Trump Tower in New York City, Choi said he felt uncertainty since news reports emerged Trump would phase out Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA.

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It’s official: Trump directs Pentagon to enact trans military ban

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Nearly one month after announcing via Twitter he’d ban transgender people from U.S. military, President Trump made good on his promise in a memo to the Pentagon Friday enacting a ban on their service — although the fate of transgender people currently in the armed forces remains to be seen.

In a memo to the Pentagon and Department of Homeland Security dated Aug. 25, Trump asserts the Obama administration “failed to identify a sufficient basis” to end the ban on transgender military service in June 2016 and directs the U.S. military to put the prohibition back in place.

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Trans of Thought: Transphobia

By : Melody Maia Monet
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Hello, I’m a transgender woman and I am mentally unstable. My well being is propped up on a razor’s edge by hormones, complicated and expensive medical procedures, as well as therapy.

I am a ticking time bomb and cannot be trusted around your children, women in the ladies’ room, or to do my job in combat situations. I suffer from a mental illness that deludes me into thinking I am a woman, but in actuality I am the sick byproduct of a patriarchy compelled to undermine female power and invade their spaces. I entrap straight men into committing unwitting homosexual acts and trick lesbians into sex with men. I am a deceiver and counterfeit with the intent of forcing the world to reject common sense views on gender and sexual identity. The only positive aspect of my existence is that I am part of a group so small that my rights as a human being can be conveniently disregarded by society based on the slimmest of suspicions, but without any basis in proven fact.

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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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LGBT groups condemn white nationalist rally in Charlottesville

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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LGBT rights groups are among those who have condemned a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., on Saturday that descended into violence.

“Everyday we partner with people and organizations across the state to make Virginia a more inclusive place where all can thrive,” Equality Virginia Executive Director James Parrish told the Washington Blade in a statement. “Through sharing our stories, listening to intersectional voices, and working for fairness we strive for a more equal commonwealth. Intimidating communities with taunts and violence has no place here. Anyone who doesn’t strongly condemn the Unite for the Right rally is complicit in supporting this dangerous and racist agenda.”

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Dem AZ Rep. Sinema ‘seriously considering’ Senate challenge

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema said Friday she is “seriously considering” a run for the Arizona Senate seat held by Republican Jeff Flake.

The three-term congresswoman said she’s heard from many in her state encouraging her to run. Flake narrowly won his first term in 2012 and is among the very few GOP incumbents who might be vulnerable in next year’s midterm elections in a Senate map that favors Republicans.

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Anti-LGBT groups on rise again with Trump in White House

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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(ABOVE: President Trump meets on July 10 for a prayer meeting with leaders from anti-LGBT groups. (Photo courtesy Facebook))

Social conservative advocates and groups seeking to undermine LGBT rights — once thought to be waning in influence — appear to have experienced a resurgence with President Trump in the White House.

The growing power of anti-LGBT groups, such as the Family Research Council, Alliance Defending Freedom and the Heritage Foundation, can be seen in the policies enacted by Trump against the LGBT community as well as the close interaction between social conservatives and his administration.

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The Wonderful World of Wanzie: President Pants on Fire

By : Michael Wanzie
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Where is even one Republican in Congress with the spine, conscience and courage to stand up and say, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore?”

Apparently they don’t yet exist.

The Wall Street Journal has called for the Trump regime to immediately engage in “radical transparency” as the only means by which they might save themselves from the heavy weight and potentially dire consequences of the Russia probe. This would be sound advice if, and only if, Donald Jr. and the Trump administration had nothing to hide.

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Trans troops continue their service as Trump threatens expulsion

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Lt. Cmdr. Blake Dremann is continuing to do his job, despite President Trump’s announcement that he intends to ban transgender people from serving in the U.S. military.

The transgender Navy supply core officer, 36, is feeling secure in his role at a military base in Virginia — at least for the time being — until higher-ups issue guidance telling him he can no longer serve.

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Israeli military’s first transgender officer criticizes Trump

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The first transgender officer in the Israel Defense Force has criticized President Trump’s decision to ban trans people from the U.S. military.

Capt. Shachar Erez in a commentary that A Wider Bridge, which describes itself as an “LGBTQ advocacy group building connections between the Israeli and North American LGBTQ communities,” posted on its website on July 27 wrote “barring transgender individuals from serving their country is not a policy based on credible professional opinion.”

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Gay Republican withdraws name for DHS post over trans military ban

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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The gay former executive director of the Delaware Republican Party has withdrawn his name from consideration for a position at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security over President Trump’s decision to ban transgender people from the military.

John Fluharty was in the running to become the agency’s assistant secretary of partnership and engagement.

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