Human Rights Campaign Endorses Ralph Northam for Governor of Virginia

by Stephen Peters

More than 185,000 eligible LGBTQ voters and hundreds of thousands more ally voters could make the difference in the commonwealth’s November 2017 election

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization, announced that the Public Policy Committee of HRC’s Board of Directors has voted to endorse Dr. Ralph Northam for Governor of Virginia in the upcoming November 2017 election. With an estimated 185,366 eligible LGBTQ voters and hundreds of thousands more allied voters in Virginia, HRC’s get-out-the-vote effort for the pro-equality candidate could make all the difference in the race for governor.

“Ralph Northam is a proven champion for equality and has the vision and experience needed to continue moving Virginia forward as a welcoming and inclusive place for all,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “As governor, Ralph Northam will fight to pass comprehensive non-discrimination protections that ensure  LGBTQ people all across the Commonwealth are able to live their lives free from discrimination. The Human Rights Campaign is proud to endorse Ralph Northam for Governor of Virginia.”

“I’m honored and humbled to receive the endorsement of the Human Rights Campaign, an organization that has fought so valiantly for the rights and equality of all people," said Dr. Ralph Northam. "Every day, new attacks are leveled at the equal treatment of individuals and groups, and I’m proud to stand with an organization that has dedicated themselves so ardently to righting those wrongs. We saw the devastating economic impact of discriminatory laws like HB2 in North Carolina, and I am committed to ensuring Virginia is an inclusive place to work and live. Like our slogan says, Virginia is for lovers, and if I am elected governor, I will make sure we won't discriminate against anyone — no matter who you are or where you're from."

As Lieutenant Governor, Dr. Northam cast the tie-breaking vote defeating legislation to force the Attorney General to defend discriminatory laws like Virginia’s former ban on marriage equality. He also cast the tie-breaking vote in favor of protecting LGBTQ public employees from discrimination in the workplace. From his opposition to legislation targeting transgender people for discrimination, to fighting to protect LGBTQ people from workplace and adoption discrimination, Dr. Northam has a long history of standing up for LGBTQ Virginians.

Dr. Northam’s support for LGBTQ equality stands in contrast to his main challenger in the race, former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie. Gillespie supported a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality and accused the LGBTQ community of bigotry and alien moral standards.

HRC recently announced a bold, proactive grassroots expansion with the launch of HRC Rising — a campaign to accelerate progress in states from coast-to-coast, resist the politics of hate, fight anti-LGBTQ legislation, and fuel pro-equality candidates and initiatives. The expansion is the biggest strategic investment in the organization’s 37-year history.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.


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