2020 Presidential Candidates Take Part in Historic Trans Rights Election Forum
August 21, 2019
The National Center for Transgender Equality Action Fund is excited to announce Transform the White House, the first-ever presidential election forum focused on the rights, experiences, and voices of the transgender community.
The digital forum will include filmed interviews with the presidential candidates, providing a platform for each to discuss how they’ve evolved on the rights of transgender people, the transgender people in their lives, and why they think they’re the best candidate to promote and achieve transgender equality from the Oval Office.
Launching today, the forum initially includes interviews with Senator Cory Booker, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, and Senator Bernie Sanders. The full interviews can be viewed at TransformTheWhiteHouse.org. Additional interviews will be added over the coming months starting next week. Follow the Action Fund on Twitter and Facebook to stay up-to-date on the latest.
Mara Keisling, Executive Director of the NCTE Action Fund, offered the following statement:
This election must be a turning point for trans people and for the future of our nation. Transgender people across the country are moving closer to full equality with every person we meet and every mind we change. Yet we have endured attack after attack from an administration intent on leaving us unprotected and erasing us from public life. Our health care, our schools, our jobs, and our safety depend on replacing President Trump with a leader dedicated to our full inclusion in society. Transgender people have shown the strength of our resilience across the country; now we must show the power of our voice at the ballot box.
Future interviews will be released in the coming weeks and throughout the run-up to the presidential primary season. Issues covered in the first three interviews include:
Sen. Cory Booker on his transgender relative:
I think that this is a moral moment in America and that the next president has to be someone that understands that there’s a restoration of the best of our values. It has to be done from that office by elevating how we are rendering populations in this country invisible. Marginalizing them is just not acceptable to me. So I hope that one day very soon—let’s call it maybe less than two years—that Avery, my niephew, and other great trans leaders in the youth community have a seat at the White House to talk about issues.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on the bravery of transgender people:
I think, for someone who’s transgender, it takes enormous courage to be the person that you are. I think it takes so much bravery to identify in the way you want to be identified. And I think every time a transgender person self-identifies and introduces himself or herself or their selves to their community, it is an act of courage. It’s an act of bravery.
Sen. Bernie Sanders on combating hate:
I think what a Sanders administration is about is pretty simple. It’s to fight discrimination in all of its forms. And I know that the trans community has been, in sometimes very violent and deadly ways, been a victim of that hatred. So we will provide all of the legal protection that we possibly can to protect the trans community and to protect anybody else who was being subjected to hate crimes and bullying.