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Trump’s potential pick for health secretary would be a major setback for LGBTQ Americans

Posted on November 23, 2016 at 5:22 PM

By (Kerry Eleveld)

Yet another potential blow to LGBTQ Americans is on the horizon from the supposed most pro-LGBTQ GOP nominee in history. Georgia Rep. Tom Price is under consideration to be secretary of Health and Human Services, which would put him in position to do major damage to gay and transgender Americans whose health needs were sidelined for decades by an agency that refused to see them. Dana Liebelson writes:

Over the years, Price co-sponsored a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. He voted against a bill that banned employers from discriminating against gay people and a bill that fought anti-gay hate crimes. He called the Obama administration’s guidelines allowing transgender students to use the bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity, “absurd.”

Price went out of his way to back Kelvin Cochran, an Atlanta fire chief who was terminated in January 2015 after employees received copies of his self-published book, which equated homosexuality with pedophilia and bestiality. The city’s mayor claimed Cochran was fired for his “judgment and management.” But Price, along with five other Georgia lawmakers, signed onto a letter asking the mayor to reinstate him. (Cochran filed a lawsuit claiming that he was discriminated against because of his faith.)

Price also appeared on a conference call in 2013 with Rabbi Noson Leiter, who once suggested that Hurricane Sandy was divine punishment for gay marriage. Leiter asked the congressman whether he thought it prudent to consider the medical and economic impacts of legislation that promotes a “homosexual agenda.”

Price said he agreed. “The consequences of activity that has been seen as outside the norm are real and must be explored completely,” he added.