Senators renew call to lift ban on gay blood donations amid coronavirus crisis

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A cadre of 17 senators — including six former presidential hopefuls and one current candidate — are calling on the Food & Drug Administration to take another look at the ban prohibiting gay and bisexual men from donating blood amid the coronavirus crisis.

In a letter dated March 26, the senators take note Trump administration health officials, including U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, have made urgent pleas for blood donations to address a shortage in the blood supply during the pandemic.

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California prison system updates policy on trans inmates

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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As scrutiny of the treatment of transgender inmates continues to grow, the California prison system has updated its policy on transition-related care, including gender reassignment surgery, although the new guidance is getting mixed reviews at best from transgender advocates.

One transgender advocate said the document “appears to contain some important improvements,” but “there are still a few areas where the policy appears problematic or unclear.” Another said the changes “do nothing to change” access to transition-related care for inmates. In defense of the policy, a spokesperson for the California prison system says the new guidance is “expected to improve access to care.”

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Kamala Harris drops bid for 2020 presidential nomination

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) has dropped her bid for the 2020 election. (Photo courtesy of CNN)

Sen. Kamala Harris, once on the trajectory to become front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, has dropped her bid to run for the White House in 2020.

The California Democrat made it official Dec. 3 with an email to supporters saying her campaign lacks the financial resources to continue.

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Black LGBTQ activists split over Harris, Buttigieg spat

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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In the aftermath of Sen. Kamala Harris criticizing Mayor Pete Buttigieg for bringing up the gay experience when confronted with his issues with black voters, black gay activists living at the intersection of the two groups are split in their reactions.

The responses from black gay activists ranged from backing Harris, saying neither was right and rejecting the spat in a call for unity against President Trump.

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Harris: Buttigieg ‘a bit naive’ for comments on gay experience

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-South Bend, Ind.) at the Democratic presidential debate on Nov. 20. (Screen capture via YouTube)

The day after the presidential debate in which Pete Buttigieg reflected on the experience of being gay in America when asked about his issues with diversity, Sen. Kamala Harris called the South Bend mayor “a bit naive” to bring that up, according to CBS News.

Last week, during a a Black Women Power Breakfast hosted by Higher Heights, a national political organization for black women that supports Harris, the California Democrat said it was wrong for Buttigieg to “compare our struggles.”

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Klobuchar: Woman with Buttigieg’s record would miss debate

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: Sen. Amy Klobuchar speaks with Jake Tapper on CNN’s “State of the Union.” (Screenshot from CNN)

CHICAGO (AP) | The 2020 Democratic presidential primary campaign drew a record six female candidates to the field. But with just less than three months until voting starts, only one has risen to the top tier.

Is it sexism or just politics?

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Elizabeth Warren marches in Las Vegas Pride parade

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (R) at Las Vegas Pride 2019. Photo via Twitter.

LAS VEGAS (AP) | Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren danced to Aretha Franklin and posed for selfies as she marched Friday night in the Las Vegas Pride parade.

The Massachusetts senator, who is gaining momentum in the crowded field of White House hopefuls, was the only candidate to appear at the parade in the early voting state.

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Trans Lives Matter protesters disrupt CNN town hall on LGBT issues

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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(Screen capture via CNN)

Protesters demanding attention to ongoing violence against transgender women momentarily disrupted the CNN town hall on LGBT issues Oct. 10 as several Democratic candidate were on stage.

The first time protesters came on the stage just as an audience member was about to ask the first question of Pete Buttigieg.

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Harris pledges to create White House advocate for LGBTQ affairs

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Sen. Kamala Harris, photo via Harris’ Facebook page.

Kamala Harris pledged on Thursday plans to designate a White House chief advocate for LGBT affairs should be elected in the 2020 election.

Harris made the commitment as part a comprehensive plan for LGBT rights, which was unveiled on the same day she’s set to participate in an HRC/CNN presidential candidate forum on LGBT issues.

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Dems put gloves back on in third debate — except for Castro

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Democratic candidates in Houston before the third debate. (Photo courtesy of ABC News)

After the last debate in which the letting of blood was all but visible on the stage floor, Democratic presidential candidates eased up on each other in their third foray Thursday — although Julian Castro didn’t seem to have gotten the memo.

With a few exceptions during the health care portion of the debate, the 2020 hopefuls — rather than attacking each other over policies and records from decades ago — generally seemed more to be willing to agree to disagree rather than put the eventual Democratic nominee in a weaker position to take on President Trump in the general election.

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2020 hopefuls highlight Medicare for All, PrEP in plans to combat HIV/AIDS

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE, L-R: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-South Bend, Ind.) Washington Blade file photos by Michael Key.

The reinvigoration of the White House Office of HIV/AIDS, access to generic PrEP and the award of cash gifts for HIV/AIDS innovations as opposed to U.S. patents were just three ideas 2020 hopefuls articulated in responses to a survey conducted by HIV/AIDS advocacy groups.

The candidates expressed those ideas in a survey conducted by AIDS United, which composed its questions in conjunction with a coalition of HIV/AIDS groups and made the responses public Monday.

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09.05.19 Tampa Bay Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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When my husband and I meet our friends on the weekend and I happen to partake in enough libations to get a bit tipsy, I tend to find myself grappling with one of three levels of intoxication.

Thankfully it doesn’t happen too often, but the first is “Disney drunk” when it does. It leads to a whole new world of one-man productions featuring every animated classic under the sea. The second is “drive-thru drunk,” in which I spend ridiculous amounts of money on food that goes straight to my hips.

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