Republican Party Platform Includes Shameful Planks Pushing Anti-LGBT Discrimination

By Adam Polaski • July 11, 2016 • 4:36 pm

Today, July 10, the Republican National Committee released proposed language for its official national party platform – and it includes shameful language advocating for some of the worst discrimination against LGBT Americans we have seen in years. The proposed platform will be voted on by delegates attending the GOP’s convention next week in Cleveland, Ohio.


A political party’s platform is meant to be a statement of values central to the party. If this platform in its current form is advanced by the party, leadership will be standing behind language that unequivocally calls for discrimination against LGBT people from coast to coast.

The platform includes two heinous planks related specifically to anti-LGBT discrimination:

  • Anti-Transgender Plank: One of the proposed planks is a measure specifically targeting transgender Americans for discrimination. The plank hails states that have filed a lawsuit over the Obama Administration’s recent guidance calling on schools that receive federal funds to allow transgender students the freedom to use the facilities and participate in activities matching their gender identity. The proposed language is modeled on North Carolina’s widely derided and discriminatory HB2. It includes language requiring that an individual’s sex corresponds with their birth certificate, creating a new “biological sex” definition that is extremely limiting.
  • Plank Supporting Anti-LGBT Religious Exemptions: Another proposed plank would have the Party endorse the so-called First Amendment Defense Act, which will be heard in a U.S. House committee on Tuesday. The legislation would allow businesses, organizations and taxpayer funded nonprofits to legally discriminate against LGBT Americans and their families. The bill is similar to HB1523, the law that a US District Court judge in Mississippi struck down two weeks ago in a ruling that outlined how the law clearly violated the First and 14h amendments to the United States Constitution.

Freedom for All Americans Executive Director Matt McTighe said today:

“It is clear that an extreme and far-right minority has a stranglehold over the platform process and is pushing the Republican Party away from the majority of Americans who support protecting LGBT individuals and their families from discrimination. Donald Trump has said that he is a friend to the LGBT community; he needs to demonstrate that commitment by fighting to have the discriminatory planks stripped from the platform.”

The LGBT-related planks would contradict what a supermajority of Republicans believe: 65% of Republicans favor comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBT people, a June 2015 poll found. That the official party platform would advocate against what Republican voters believe is antithetical to the very purpose of a platform.


Freedom for All Americans calls on presumptive Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump – and other Republican party leaders – to condemn this extreme anti-LGBT language and work toward a future where no one faces legal discrimination because of who they are or who they love. You can take action by signing the petition for these leaders to push toward these planks being stripped from the platform here.

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