WASHINGTON – Today Human Rights Campaign (HRC) president Chad Griffin released the following statement upon learning U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg had passed away:
“Senator Lautenberg was a beacon for equality in Congress. He fought for justice with more than simply his vote. He knew bullying in our schools is a scourge, and he stood up to end it. He knew that workplace discrimination and hate crimes erode the freedom of all Americans, so he worked to stop them, session after session.
“Nothing better sums up his undying legacy than his 2004 floor speech opposing a federal constitutional amendment banning marriage equality. ‘When we see things that are shameful we should not be too spineless to respond.’ Senator Lautenberg had spine, and he will be deeply missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his friends, family, colleagues and the many across New Jersey and across this country who knew and loved him.”
For well over a decade, Senator Lautenberg has received a 100% rating on the HRC Scorecard, which scores members of congress on their positions on LGBT-related legislation. Following the tragic death of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi, Sen. Lautenberg introduced the Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act to help combat harassment and cyberbullying on college campuses.
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.