News & Politics

Cory Booker Slams Tulsi Gabbard on LGBT Issues: The Equality Act Is 'Not Enough'

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., speaks at a Democratic primary debate hosted by NBC News at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Art, Wednesday, June 26, 2019, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

At the first 2020 Democratic presidential debate, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) attempted to prove herself on LGBT issues, citing her support for the Equality Act, a radical bill that would strike down females as a coherent legal category and force dissenting Americans to celebrate LGBT pride. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) slammed her support for the Equality Act as utterly insufficient.

“Let me say that there is no one in our government at any level who has the right to tell any American who they should be allowed to love or who they should be allowed to marry,” Gabbard began. “I serve on the Equality Caucus and recently voted for the passage of the Equality Act.”

A moderator had asked her how LGBT voters could trust her, given her history supporting the traditional definition of marriage as between one man and one woman. “I grew up in a socially conservative home,” Gabbard admitted. Yet she insisted that serving in the military alongside LGBT people taught her to stand for their issues. “I know that they would give their life for me and I would give my life for them,” she said.

Booker wasn’t buying it.

Mentioning the lynching of black Americans, he declared, “We do not talk enough about trans Americans, especially African American trans Americans and the incredibly high rates of murder right now.”

“It’s not enough to be on the Equality Act — I’m an original co-sponsor — we need to have a president that will fight to protect LGBTQ Americans every single day.”

In other words, supporting a radical piece of legislation opposed by a broad coalition of Americans is not enough. Democrats must also be obsessed with the issue.

Gabbard tried very hard to prove her ideological purity on LGBT issues, but her history remains a black mark on her record. To the increasing radical activists on these issues, supporting their goals is not enough. Rather than celebrate Gabbard’s decision to support his bill, Booker attacked his political ally for “evolving” on the issue — just like Barack Obama did.

Follow Tyler O’Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.