#AM_Equality Tip Sheet: May 4, 2016

HRC staff

TRUMP, PRESUMPTIVE GOP NOMINEE, IS A WOLF IN SHEEP’S CLOTHING: As all eyes turn toward Donald Trump's run up to November, it's important for pro-equality voters to have the facts. Despite his malleable rhetoric -- which shifts depending on who he is standing in front of at any given moment -- he has made clear that he will be no friend to the LGBT community in the White House. Donald Trump is nothing more than a wolf in sheep’s clothing when it comes to LGBT equality. Check out four ways Donald Trump has already pledged to roll back LGBT equality if he succeeds in his quest to become president on HRC’s blog post.

IN CRUZ DEFEAT, A WITHERING REBUKE OF ANTI-TRANS EXTREMISM: We hope NC Governor Pat McCrory, Senate President Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore were watching. While Ted Cruz’s campaign has been riddled with anti-LGBT rhetoric, his closing message was to demonize transgender people. And it backfired. Stories in The Washington Post, Huffington Post, TIME and Politico make one message clear to candidates: attacking transgender people isn’t a winning campaign strategy. HRC Communications Director Jay Brown on what it means: “Ted Cruz has waged an ugly, bigoted campaign against LGBT equality for months. Cruz will be remembered for spending the last days of his presidential campaign shamefully trying to stoke a dangerous brand of hate against transgender people like me to score political points. Ted Cruz’s false attack ads and repeated smears against us in the closing days of his campaign were clearly rejected by voters. There’s a lesson here -- Americans of all parties believe LGBT people should be protected from discrimination and politicians who don’t take note risk being rejected at the ballot box.” More here.

NEWS & OBSERVER EDITORIAL BLASTS MCCRORY FOR FIDDLING WHILE ROME BURNS: Don’t miss the News & Observer’s takedown of Gov. McCrory’s bizarre local radio interview spent “yukking up” the disaster he caused in passing HB2 … “Between laughs, McCrory continued to misrepresent the bill as simple protection of privacy rather than what it is: a green light to discriminate against gay and transgender people. After weeks of damaging national publicity and setbacks for the state’s economy, most governors would be hard at work figuring out a way to fix the HB2 mess.” On the Charlotte-based "The Big Show with John Boy and Billy" radio program, McCrory even suggested that Bruce Springsteen had canceled his show because of poor ticket sales, and made jokes about bathrooms while on air. No one else is laughing. More from The News & Observer.

MEANWHILE, MCCRORY’S REELECTION EFFORT CONTINUES TO CRATER: A new poll from “North Carolina’s Conservative Voice” shows that a majority of North Carolinians would vote against GOP Gov. Pat McCrory. According to a poll released by Civitas Institute, 46 percent of likely voters in the Tar Heel State would mark their ballot for Attorney General Roy Cooper, the Democratic candidate for governor, while just 36 percent say they’d vote for McCrory, who, with his GOP cronies, Senate President Phil Berger, and House Speaker Tim Moore, is responsible for HB2 and the hammering the state’s economy and reputation has taken since it was passed. The new polling comes on the heels of Hoosiers rebuking Ted Cruz in Indiana last night over his anti-trans rhetoric, and adds proof that voters just aren’t buying McCrory’s repeated, increasingly desperate attempts to defend the indefensible. More from Vox.

OXFORD, ALA., MAY BACKTRACK ON APPALLING ANTI-TRANS LAW: Looks like the Oxford, Ala., City Council is having buyer’s remorse over its recent decision to pass an outrageous and unprecedented anti-transgender ordinance. The council is set to gather at 2:30 p.m. CT today for a “special meeting” where members are expected to discuss recalling the law. Following its passage, ACLU Alabama is talking about a lawsuit, HRC Alabama and others are organizing a Saturday rally and a major softball tournament is being moved until the law is repealed. More from AL.com.

OBAMA TO DESIGNATE STONEWALL INN A NATIONAL MONUMENT IN RECOGNITION OF SEMINAL EVENT IN FIGHT FOR LGBT EQUALITY: The Obama Administration is poised to declare the area surrounding the historic Stonewall Inn a national monument -- making it the first to formally recognize the struggle for LGBT equality. Federal officials are holding a session on May 9 to receive feedback on the proposal. The proposal has the support of New York officials including U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Gov. Cuomo has already signed legislation transferring ownership of the city-owned property to the federal government so it can be designated as a federal monument. More from The Washington Post.

GLOUCESTER COUNTY DOUBLES DOWN AGAINST TRANS TEEN: The Gloucester County School Board in Virginia has officially filed a motion to appeal a ruling by a panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of the U.S. Department of Education’s interpretation of Title IX of the Education Act of 1972 as protecting transgender students like Virginia’s Gavin Grimm from discrimination, including allowing them to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity. Grimm sued the district over a discriminatory policy that barred him from using the boys’ restroom, alleging that the district violated Title IX of the Education Act of 1972. The School Board is now appealing the panel’s ruling, asking that entire 15-judge court of appeals reconsider last month’s historic 2-1 decision. More from The Associated Press.

GIVE ELSA A GIRLFRIEND! DISNEY FANS RALLY FOR AN LGBT PRINCESS: We don’t want to let it go! Over the past few days, the twitterverse has been lighting up with the hashtag #GiveElsaAGirlfriend, urging Disney to give Elsa, the protagonist of the hit film Frozen, a girlfriend in the movie’s sequel. Here’s to hoping Elsa finds her Princess Charming. More from HRC’s blog.


THE WINDY CITY EMBRACES EQUALITY FOR TRANS STUDENTS: Chicago Public Schools (CPS) have stepped up for their transgender students in a big way. On Tuesday, CPS’ chief education officer Janice Jackson announced new policies guaranteeing all students access to facilities that most align with their gender identity, including provisions for accommodating students who are questioning their gender, or who identify as a nonbinary gender. The same rules will apply to adult employees of the school district. It is a big, supportive statement from the largest school district in the state. More from Chicago Sun Times.

MORE THAN 700 FLORIDIANS URGE STATE TO KEEP RULES PROTECTING LGBT YOUTH IN FOSTER CARE: The possibility that Florida’s Department of Children and Families (DCF) could capitulate to pressure from two religious groups and backtrack on new rules banning discrimination and so-called “conversion therapy” for LGBT foster children in group homes is prompting vigorous opposition in the Sunshine State. More than 50 people appeared at a public hearing to protest changes being contemplated by the DCF, and 700-plus people submitted written comments to the agency opposing any rollback to protections, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Guess how many have spoken in support of discrimination? (We’ll spoil it for you… only one). The final decision remains in the hands of officials at the state’s DCF. More from The Tampa Bay Times.

WE’RE AMPED ABOUT THIS FIRST: LGBT BIZ OWNERS WIN NATIONAL SMALL BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR AWARD: For the first time, LGBT business owners have captured the national Small Business Person of the Year Award - or, in this case, business persons of the year: Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell, who have brewed up a fabulously successful coffee operation (cafes, roasting and bean growing) in California. Equator Coffees and Teas began in a garage, and is projecting revenues this year of $15 million. We’ll raise a cup to that! More from Mercury News.


CONGRATULAZIONI!: An Italian court has granted a lesbian couple the right to adopt each other's children. While the country still does not have same-sex civil unions or marriage, this is a huge first step in recognizing the rights of same-sex couples. More from Pink News.


The Arizona Republic points to North Carolina and Mississippi as prime examples of what Arizona shouldn’t do… The Guardian profiles a family doctor in the small town of Oneonta, New York, who has been tailoring her practice around the needs of transgender people for years… The Associated Press reports how the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system is the latest to take a stand against NC’s HB2... and The New York Times highlights the recent marriage of a gay U.S. diplomat in China.

Have news? Send us your news and tips at AMEquality@hrc.org. Click here to subscribe to A.M. Equality and follow @HRC for all the latest news. Thanks for reading!

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