Cory Booker in CNN LGBT Town Hall


On Civil Rights: Blacks were fractions of human, in original Constitution

My whole life as a kid that was raised to understand that my rights and privileges are not enshrined in the Constitution, originally. Heck, African-Americans were fractions of human beings. I'm here because people of all races and all backgrounds fought to affirm the right to African-Americans and stand up for them. As a college student working at a crisis counseling center with the focus on LGBTQ youth, as a mayor at a time that my own party was passing things like the Defense of Marriage Act and saying they still had to evolve on the issue. As mayor of my city, the second flag I raised was the pride flag and I said I wouldn't conduct any marriages until everyone could be married. You can be sure that as president of the United States, I will be focused every day, not just on executing the laws of the land that should protect all, but I will be setting an example that we are a nation of love of all people, and you can't lead the people if you don't love the people, all the people.
Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Civil Rights: We must enforce equal rights in schools

Q: Do you believe Title IX should protect students on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation?

BOOKER: I will change the Trump administration's guidance back to what the Obama administration's guidance was... that schools should allow people to use bathrooms that conform with their gender identity. We must use our Department of Justice and the Department of Education's civil rights division to go after schools that are denying people equal rights and equal protections.

Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Civil Rights: Always fights for LGBTQ and will pass Equality Act

Q: The Supreme Court heard arguments whether current laws protect LGBTQ people from being fired. If the Court does not protect these workers' rights, what would you do?

BOOKER: I have spent my life working on LGBTQ issues. I am one of the lead original sponsors of the Equality Act. All of us swear an oath that we'll be a nation of liberty and justice for all. Those are aspirational words until every LGBTQ American has equal rights and I will get the Equality Act passed in our country.

Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Crime: Presidential office on hate crimes and white supremacy

Q: On June 12, 2016, I was present as a man with an assault weapon murdered 49 mostly LGBTQ people of color at Pulse nightclub. What will you do?

BOOKER: So first of all, very clearly, it is a national emergency, the majority of the terrorist attacks in this country since 9/11 had been right-wing extremist groups and the majority of them had been white supremacist and hate groups. And I will elevate, as president, an office on hate crimes and white supremacy to make sure it is a presidential level effort to protect our country as a whole, but I'm not stopping there. We need a Department of Justice that recognizes this is a problem and investigates hate crimes. 30% of LGBTQ youth have reported missing school in the last month because of fears for their physical safety. We live in a country where we still see regular, everyday violence and intimidation and bullying against Americans because of who they are.

Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Government Reform: Paid family leave and child tax credit expansion for all

Afghanistan and the Congo have paid family leave. America should have paid family leave. And to see the challenges that parents are having struggling to hold down a job, struggling to find affordable child care, and this is why my support for everything from paid family leave to expanding the child tax credit are really urgent and those plans are going to apply equally to everyone.
Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Health Care: Forbid charging more for drugs in U.S. than elsewhere

Q: A drug called Truvada provides almost absolute protection against becoming HIV-positive. A monthly supply costs less than $6 to make. However, its manufacturer charges more than $1,600. What actions would you take to address this cost barrier?

BOOKER: We're going to use Medicaid, Medicare to negotiate down prices, taking patents away from companies that unjustly raise their prices, creating a law that you cannot raise the price of drugs higher in this country than you're selling in others.

Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

On Principles & Values: His faith taught love, so he fought his own homophobia

Q: In the 90's you wrote an article that detailed your journey to accept LGBTQ plus people as equals. It must have made people uncomfortable, can you talk about that?

Booker: I wanted to push people to understand the absurdities of homophobia, and became a campus activist on those issues, and so I wrote this article to challenge people about their homophobia. It started as a teenager that saw growing up, an environment that was hostile to my peers who my faith taught me to love no matter what.

Source: CNN LGBT Town Hall Oct 10, 2019

The above quotations are from LGBTQ Town Hall: hosted by CNN in Los Angeles.
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Page last updated: Nov 11, 2019