Biden vows to protect trans kids and stop ‘criminalizing’ their sex-change doctors in front of DRAG QUEENS at White House as he signs same-sex marriage bill : Tears into ‘extreme’ Supreme Court and ‘callous’ Republican laws
- President Joe Biden attacked the ‘extreme’ Supreme Court for threatening rights as he signed the Respect for Marriage Act into law Tuesday
- He also vowed to protect transgender children and ‘callous’ laws targeting them
- ‘Congress is acting because an extreme Supreme Court has stripped away the rights afforded to millions of Americans that existed for half a century,’ he said
- Biden was joined by Sam Smith, Cyndi Lauper, droves of plaintiff from previous same-sex marriages cases and several thousand attendees on the South Lawn
President Joe Biden attacked the ‘extreme’ Supreme Court for threatening rights and vowed to protect transgender children under threat from ‘cynical’ Republican laws as he signed a bill protecting same-sex and interracial marriage at a White House ceremony with Cyndi Lauper and Sam Smith.
In front of a crowd of drag queens and LGBTQ rights supporters, he went after GOP-led efforts to have the government intervene in gender-affirming care for minors – which have risen 13-fold in the last decade according to a recent study.
‘We need to challenge the hundreds of callous and cynical laws introduced in the states targeting transgender children, terrifying families and criminalizing doctors who give children the care we need,’ Biden said. ‘We have to protect these children so they know they are loved.’
Biden said the Respect for Marriage Act was needed because Justice Clarence Thomas suggested other cases based on Roe v. Wade’s precedent should be revisited – including the 2015 landmark gay marriage decision Obergefell v. Hodges.
‘So sadly, I must acknowledge another reason we’re here,’ Biden told a crowd of thousands. ‘Congress is acting because an extreme Supreme Court has stripped away the rights afforded to millions of Americans that existed for half a century.
President Joe Biden attacked the ‘extreme’ Supreme Court for threatening rights as he signed the Respect for Marriage Act into law in a ceremony on the South Lawn Tuesday with Sam Smith and Cyndi Lauper
Singer Sam Smith performs their hit Stay with Me during a bill signing ceremony for the Respct for Marriage Act
Icon Cyndi Lauper performed her song True Colors on the White House South Lawn Tuesday
Biden said he wished to still sign the Equality Act, which would ensure LGBTQ Americans with even greater protections, including in the workplace.
‘When a person can be married in the morning and thrown out of a restaurant for being gay in the afternoon – this is still wrong,’ the president said.
Biden also acknowledged the recent shooting in Colorado, where the accused shooter defense attorneys said identifies as non-binary targeted an LGBTQ nightclub.
Suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich is facing five murder and hate crime charges for opening fire with an AR-15-style rifle in the early hours of November 19.
‘We must stop the hate and violence like we just saw in Colorado Springs,’ he said.
Biden said signing the same-sex marriage bill was the act of pushing back against all kinds of intolerance.
‘Folks, racism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, transphobia. They’re all connected. But the antidote to hate is love,’ Biden said. ‘This law and the law that defends strike a blow against hate in all its forms.’
Biden’s guest list included a number of prominent drag queens, who confirmed their attendance on social media.
Drag queen Marti Gould Cummings shared their invitation on Instagram.
‘To be a non binary drag artist invited to the White House is something I never imagined would happen. Thank you President & Dr. Biden for inviting me to this historic bill signing. Grateful doesn’t begin to express the emotions I feel,’ Cummings wrote.
Brita Filter, who appeared on the 12th season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, chimed in and said she was invited too.
Prior to Biden’s passionate address, both Sam Smith and Cyndi Lauper performed.
Smith played their hit ballad Stay with Me, while Lauper performed True Colors. Lady Gaga’s Born This Way blasted over the speakers as soon as Biden signed the bill.
A drag queen in the audience poses for a photo before the ceremony on the White House’s South Lawn on Tuesday afternoon
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and his husband Chasten watch as Biden signed the bill into law
Aparna Shrivastava, right, takes a photo with her partner Shelby Teeter after Biden signed the act into law
He did so with plaintiffs from previous same-sex marriages court cases lining the White House’s stairs and surrounded by Democratic and Republican lawmakers.
Biden thanked Sen. Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat and lesbian, for being ‘a real hero,’ while also crediting Republican Sen. Susan Collins for getting the bill across the line.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who spoke at the top of the program, talked about how the legislation was ‘personal’ to him.
‘The tie that I’m wearing reminds me what this moment is all about,’ the New York Democrat said. ‘It’s the tie I ore the day my daughter got married to a beautiful young lady,’ he added, nothing that his daughter Alison is expected with wife Elizabeth.
Schumer gave a shout-out to Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, despite her announcement to leave th Democratic Party on Friday. She’ll still caucus with the Democrats.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who will step down from her top leadership post at the start of the year, received raucous cheers.
She recalled how she signed the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell as one of her last act when she originally signed as House speaker between 2007 and 2011.
Plaintiffs from previous same-sex marriages court cases lined the White House’s stairs at the Respect for Marriage Act signing ceremony Tuesday
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who spoke at the top of the program, talked about how the legislation was ‘personal’ to him as he has a lesbian daughter who is married and expecting a child with her wife
‘We tossed Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell into the dustbin of history,’ she cheered.
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell didn’t allow gay people to serve openly in the U.S. military.
‘It’s fitting that one of my final act of speakership was to sign the Respect for Marriage Act,’ she noted.
Though Pelosi also said she wanted Congress to still pass the Equality Act, which the House passed, but it fizzled in the U.S. Senate.
Vice President Kamala Harris recalled her Valentine’s Day week of 2004. ‘When I had the honor to stand in San Francisco city hall and perform some of our country’s first marriages of same-sex couples,’ she said.
‘Let us think about today, December 13, 2022, a day when thanks to Democrats and Republicans we finally protect marriage rights in federal law,’ Harris said.
As Biden wrapped up his own remarks, he reflected on the recent release of WNBA star Brittney Griner and how he had gotten to know Griner’s wife Cherelle.
Cherelle Griner had said, Biden recalled, ‘Today my family is whole.’
‘My fellow Americans, that all-consuming, life altering, love of commitment, that’s marriage,’ Biden said.
Attendees at the White House’s signing ceremony for the Respect for Marriage Act
Hosue Speaker Nancy Pelosi, flanked by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (right), addresses the crowd at the signing ceremony Tuesday afternoon for the Respect for Marriage Act
Directly before the ceremony, Lauper made a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room.
‘We can rest easy tonight because our families are validated. Because now we’re allowed to love somebody, which sounds odd to say, but Americans can now love who we love,’ said Lauper, a longtime ally of the LGBTQ community, who will perform at the afternoon ceremony.
‘And bless Joe Biden and all the people that worked on this for allowing people not to worry and their children not to worry about their future,’ Lauper continued.
The longtime pop star has violet bleached hair and wore a black pantsuit over a black shirt adorned with rhinestones.
‘So I brought a friend with me, who is an icon really, she doesn’t need any introduction,’ said press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, ushering Lauper to the podium.
Pop star Cyndi Lauper made a surprise appearance Tuesday in the White House briefing room ahead of President Joe Biden signing the Respect for Marriage Act in the South Lawn
‘We can rest easy tonight because our families are validated. Because now we’re allowed to love somebody, which sounds odd to say, but Americans can now love who we love,’ Lauper told reporters from the White House podium
‘Bless Joe Biden and all the people that worked on this for allowing people not to worry and their children not to worry about their future,’ Lauper said
President Joe Biden will sign the Respect for Marriage Act Tuesday afternoon in a ceremony attended by thousands on the White House South Lawn. The White House was lit up in rainbow colors after in June 2015 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage
Invited to the White House for the ceremony are Marti Gould Cummings (left) and Brita Filter (right). The Biden administration is showing support for drag artists as they became political fodder by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis this summer and have been targeted by right-wing groups
Both Cummings and Filter have performed for young audiences, with Cummings routinely putting on kids shows in progressives communities like Provincetown, Massachusetts.
Filter got some pushback for a performance she delivered at a ‘Pride Chapel’ in April, as she was asked to perform her drag show and then talk about queerness with a group of students from the progressive independent Episcopal school in the East Village.
Some conservative students said that they were uncomfortable with the dancing and twerking in a church setting, according to The New York Post.
Biden’s backing of drag queens comes after Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis – who could be his 2024 White House rival – tried to make drag shows a culture war issue earlier this year.
DeSantis said he would be filing a complaint after a video showed a child in the audience of a Florida drag brunch, in which one of the queens was exposing naked, but clearly fake, large breasts.
The queen covers up her breasts as she spots a child seated front row, according to a video shared by the conservative Libs of TikTok account.
‘This is what a “family-friendly drag show” in a bar looks like,’ the post said.
At a press conference in late July, DeSantis said ‘having kids involved in this is wrong. That is not consistent with our law and policy in the state of Florida’ and suggested that the restaurant in question, R House in Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood, could lose its liquor license.
A statement from the restaurant’s owners called it a ‘misunderstanding.’
The White House’s support also comes as drag queens and LGBTQ establishments have been targeted by hard-right groups such as the Proud Boys and the Patriot Front.
Last month in Colorado Springs, Colorado five people were killed when a gunman entered Club Q during a drag performance and started shooting. That followed the June 2016 shooting at Pulse nightclub, a LGBTQ nightclub in Orlando, in which 49 people were killed.
Previewing the bill signing from the podium Monday, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre teased that there would be musical guests and entertainment at the South Lawn event, but wouldn’t give reporters more information than that.
The legislation came about after Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, in a concurring opinion to Dobbs – which overturned Roe v. Wade in June – said that other cases based on the precedent that had been established in Roe should be revisited, including the 2015 landmark gay marriage decision Obergefell v. Hodges.
The Respect for Marriage Act officially repeals the Defense of Marriage Act, the Clinton-era legislation that banned federal recognition of same-sex marriage.
It requires the federal government to recognize same-sex and interracial marriages, codifying parts of Obergefell and the landmark 1967 case Loving v. Virginia.
The House of Representatives passed the bill in July, with the help of 47 Republicans.
The bill had more difficulty getting through the Senate, where 60 votes are needed for cloture, but eventually 12 Republicans signed on.
The bill passed the Senate last last month after amendments were added to bolster religious protections and clarify that it did not legalize polygamous marriages.
The House then passed the updated version on Thursday.
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