Gay ex-Trump official, who called him ‘most pro-gay president ever’, ignores LGBT+ rights in convention speech
Richard Grenell has constantly praised Donald Trump for appointing him, a gay man, as acting director of national intelligence in his administration – but he made no reference at all to LGBT+ rights in his Republican National Convention (RNC) speech.
While Grenell failed to make any reference to LGBT+ rights in his speech, he did heap praise on Trump’s foreign policy.
He also used his slot at the RNC to make barbs about Joe Biden’s age, and praised Trump for putting the American people first. The memo about about the White House’s appalling track record on LGBT+ rights must have gotten lost in transit.
Grenell, who served as ambassador to Germany and acting director of national intelligence before departing the Trump administration in May of this year, lauded Trump’s isolationist “America First” foreign policy, and claimed “Washington elites” want people to think it is “immoral”.
“And so, they call it nationalist,” Grenell said. “That tells you all you need to know. The DC crowd thinks when they call Donald Trump a nationalist, they’re insulting him.”
Richard Grenell says the American people are in charge under Trump’s presidency – but this must exclude LGBT+ Americans.
He continued: “With Donald Trump, you always know exactly who is in charge. Because the answer is you. You’re in charge. Not lobbyists, not special interests, not war mongers… with Donald Trump and Mike Pence in the White House, the boss is the American people.”
Once again, this presumably excludes LGBT+ Americans, who have largely been left out in the cold by the Trump administration.
“‘America First’ does not advance the interests of one group of Americans at the expense of another. It has no bias about red or blue, educated or not educated, urban or rural,” Grenell continued.
“‘America First’ is simply the belief that politicians should focus on the equality and dignity of every American, and that this duty is fulfilled by promoting the safety and wealth of the American people above all else. That’s ‘America First’. That’s the Trump doctrine. And that, my friends, is four more years.”
The speech makes Grenell just the third openly gay person to speak at the Republican National Convention, following Jim Kolbe in 2000 and Peter Thiel in 2016, according to the Washington Blade.
We must make sure to do everything possible over the next 69 days to ensure we elect a pro-equality ally in the White House.”
Grenell follows in Kolbe’s footsteps, who also failed to address LGBT+ rights during his 2000 speech. Thiel has the distinction of being the only queer person to speak specifically about his experience as a gay man at the Republican National Convention (RNC).
Grenell’s reluctance to address LGBT+ issues in his RNC speech comes just a week after he claimed he could “prove” that Trump is “the most pro-gay president in American history”.
Speaking in a video for the Log Cabin Republicans, an LGBT+ conservative group, Grenell said: “President Trump has done more to advance the rights of gays and lesbians in three years than Joe Biden did in 40-plus years in Washington.”
Grenell conveniently ignored the fact that Trump has launched precisely 168 attacks against the LGBT+ community during his presidency, according to GLAAD’s Trump Accountability Project.
The Trump administration has banned transgender people from serving in the military, actively supported discrimination against LGBT+ people in employment, services and healthcare and erased LGBT+ resources, data and language from government websites.
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Human Rights Campaign slams the ‘lies’ told by the Trump administration.
Ahead of Grenell’s speech yesterday, the Human Rights Campaign released a statement lambasting the “lies” Trump has told the LGBT+ community throughout his presidency.
“Donald Trump lies and lies and lies,” said Alphonso David, president of the Human Rights Campaign.
“And while the LGBTQ community knows that, and knows of the hundreds of attacks by the Trump administration over the last three and a half years, we must remind our allies what is at stake.
“We must make sure to do everything possible over the next 69 days to ensure we elect a pro-equality ally in the White House.”