Why 2020 Democrats Can’t Take the LGBTQ+ Vote for Granted

Beto ran a 5K for the cause, Joe Biden took a turn behind the bar at the Stonewall Inn, Mayor Pete and Elizabeth Warren are selling Pride-themed items in their merch stores. It’s Pride Month, and the 2020 Democratic contenders have been courting LGBTQ voters in a big way. But although most LGBT voters identified as Democrats in 2018, being trans, gay or pansexual does not a Democrat make.

VICE News put together a panel made up of 12 members of the LGBTQ+ community and asked them about their politics — which were extremely diverse — and who they like for 2020.

“I think Donald Trump is really changing the Republican Party by working with the gay and lesbian community,” said Paul Ramirez, a Republican gay man and the vp of advertising at The Wisdom Companies. “If there was a homophobic drop of blood in him, we would have heard that 20 years ago.”

Others decidedly disagreed about Trump’s record on LBGTQ issues, and its effect on the community.

“When the Trump administration, or perhaps just Trump via Twitter, puts out a statement saying that ‘no more trans people are allowed in the military, that’s it we’re cutting you off and anybody in has got to leave.’ That affects the lives of transgender citizens of this country,” said actor Donnie Cianciotto, who identifies as a pansexual transgender man and a Democrat. “It makes us appear ‘less than’ to other people, who now can justify their bigotry and their transphobia, because look at what the government does.”

As for Mayor Pete, the openly gay candidate running for President, his out and proud status wasn’t enough for panelists, on either end of the political spectrum.

“There’s nothing fresh. He’s an Obama sequel,” said Brandon Straka, a Republican gay man and founder of the # WalkAway Campaign, which aims to get left-leaning voters to turn away from the Democratic Party. “The fact that he’s gay — that doesn’t mean he has my back as a trans person,” said LGBTQIA+ educator and activist Jamey Jesperson, who identifies as a progressive queer non-binary asexual transfemme. “It means nothing to me that he is a gay person, because he’s also cis, and he’s also white.”

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Trump calls out Beto, praises Boeing in Oval

President Donald Trump welcomed Beto O’Rourke to the Democratic primary Thursday by going after his hand movements. “Is he crazy or is that just the way he acts?” Trump asked in the Oval Office. (March 14)

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O’Rourke Campaign Craze & Russian Cowboys: VICE News Tonight Full Episode (HBO)

This is the November 1, 2018 FULL EPISODE of VICE News Tonight on HBO.

2:11 Trump is unleashing a blast of pre-midterm falsehoods, and the Republican establishment is going along

7: 52 Across the country, Beto O’Rourke fans are gathering to raise money and support the campaign. But these are not his constituents. They don’t live in Texas and can’t vote there. So why bother going through all the trouble, when it doesn’t even look good for Beto to pull out a win in Texas?

11:55 Democrats desperately want Beto O’Rourke to win but the reality is that Texas is probably a ways away from turning blue. We get a reality check from James Carville on what it would take for it to go blue THIS year. (It won’t.)

14:37 Being a cowboy wasn’t even a job in Russia 10 years ago. Today, there are 1,000 of them

19:43 VICE News breaks down the elements that make Post Malone’s music so damn catchy.

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Beto O’Rourke: The Senate candidate hoping to turn Texas blue

In one of the most hotly contested matchups in the US midterm elections, Democrat Beto O’Rourke is trying to unseat conservative Texas Senator Ted Cruz. The 46-year-old Beto, whom supporters call by his first name, is climbing in the polls, as the November 6th election draws ever closer.