Paul Ryan (left) and Mitt RomneyPhoto:
The Human Rights Campaign – the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization – on Saturday denounced presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s selection of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) as his vice-presidential running mate.
Ryan’s voting record in Congress – and his public remarks – make it clear that he does not support the dignity of LGBT Americans; a matter on which he is out-of-touch with the majority of Americans – even those within the Republican Party, the HRC said, in a statement.
“Paul Ryan does not support LGBT families, and has voted against allowing gay and lesbian couples to adopt. He voted against hate crime protections. He opposed repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and he does not support marriage equality.
“Recent polling shows just how out-of-touch Ryan’s positions on LGBT equality are: support for marriage equality stands at 54 percent nationwide, with those between the ages of 18 – 34 supporting marriage equality by 73 percent; according to a June CNN/ORC International Survey. Nearly 50 percent of Republicans under the age of 35 also support marriage equality, according to an NBC News/WSJ poll.”
“Ryan’s record of voting against fairness, dignity and equality is out of touch with the majority of Americans and a fast growing majority of Republicans,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “LGBT Americans need leadership that will continue to fight for their rights to protect their families, marry the person they love, and enjoy equal protections under the law.”
“Mitt Romney’s record is no better than Ryan’s on matters of LGBT equality. Romney does not support relationship recognition for LGBT people – making him even more conservative on LGBT issues than former President George W. Bush, who supported civil unions while in office.
“Romney views workplace protections for LGBT people as an “unfair burden on employers,” and he does not acknowledge the dignity and respect LGBT families deserve. As a signer of the National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) “marriage pledge,” Mitt Romney has committed himself to vigorously pursuing a federal marriage amendment – a goal his running mate shares; defending the Defense of Marriage Act; and even setting up a McCarthy-like commission to investigate those who do not support NOM’s anti-LGBT views.
“In the House, Ryan voted against hate crimes protections for LGBT people twice. He does not support marriage equality – in fact, he has twice supported the Federal Marriage Amendment that would ban loving, committed same-sex couples from marrying, and he supported a similar constitutional amendment in his home state of Wisconsin. Ryan does not support LGBT families – he voted in favor of banning gay and lesbian couples from adopting in the nation’s capital. He also voted against repealing ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’”