Post submitted by Kat Skiles, former HRC Senior Marketing Strategist

This weekend, Donald Trump and Mike Pence became the the first Republican ticket to ever address the so-called “Values Voter Summit” -- a gathering of the most anti-LGBTQ activists in America. In this not so surprising new low, Donald Trump delivered remarks yesterday consist with the values that have defined his campaign from the very start: hatred, division, and fear.

But that was just the warm up. Today, the man who became nationally known for pushing Indiana’s anti-LGBTQ law,  Mike Pence is set to deliver the main event. As Governor of Indiana, Trump’s running mate has given us all a preview of his vision for America -- a future where the rights and safety of LGBTQ people are put at risk because of who they and who they love. Pence has made discrimination against our community a cornerstone of his political career.

In a marked contrast, Democratic Vice Presidential Candidate Tim Kaine is set to speak out for equality at the 20th annual HRC National Dinner tonight. On the same day Kaine stands alongside the Human Rights Campaign in support of LGBTQ people here and across the globe, Pence is across town courting support from the most notorious anti-LGBTQ extremists in the nation. 

The Trump-Pence ticket has embraced an anti-equality agenda from the start -- holding tight to positions that threaten LGBTQ people in their homes, schools and communities. With breathtaking disregard, their campaign even went as far as opening a field office across the street from Pulse nightclub in Orlando.

Yesterday, HRC called upon our online community of supporters to participate in coordinated social media engagement that speaks out against the far-right’s agenda of discrimination.

Today, we’re back at it!

Here are 10 reasons you should join HRC for a Tweet Up during Pence’s remarks, today at 11:30 a.m. EST using the hashtags #NotOurValues and #VVS2016:

1. Governor Pence became a national disgrace in 2015, for his “license to discriminate” bill that would have allowed businesses to deny service to LGBTQ people -- and subsequently defended the bill over an outcry from the business community and a majority of Hoosier voters. In a now notorious interview with ABC last year, Pence refused to answer eight separate times when asked whether businesses should be able to discriminate against LGBTQ people. 

2. Pence opposed the Supreme Court’s nationwide marriage equality ruling, saying, “Like many Hoosiers, I believe marriage is the union between one man and one woman…”

3. Voters in Indiana continue to have strongly negative feelings toward Pence. In a recent poll, only 36 percent said that Pence deserved re-election, and they gave their governor a net negative job disapproval rating. Only 40 percent approved of his job performance and 42 percent disapproved.

4. When serving in Congress, Pence voted against the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”  

5. Trump’s running mate opposed guidance from the Department of Education that clarifies that transgender students have a right under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to access restrooms consistent with their gender identity, saying, “The federal government has no business getting involved in issues of this nature.”

6. While in Congress, Pence voted against the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. He said that compliance with protections derived from the law could mean “the employer has to ban employees from having a Bible at the workplace for their break time, or displaying Bible verses. He continued, “We must stand for the right of every American to practice their faith according to the dictates of their conscience, whether it be in the public square or in the workplace.”

7. Pence voted against the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, calling it a “radical social agenda.”

8. Mike Pence signed a bill to that would jail same-sex couples who applied for a marriage license.

9. Pence attempted to divert federal dollars from HIV prevention to conversion therapy. He claimed it was an attempt to ensure that funds “were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus… and that “resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.” So-called “conversion therapy” has been rejected by every mainstream medical and mental health organization for decades, but due to continuing discrimination and societal bias against LGBTQ people, some practitioners continue to conduct conversion therapy. Minors are especially vulnerable, and conversion therapy can lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide.

10. Mike Pence opposed cracking down on countries that target LGBTQ people with criminal prosecution and praised Vladimir Putin as a “stronger leader.”

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Filed under: Vote Equality, Mike Pence

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