TODAY -- Mike Pence Stumps for Anti-Equality Candidates Mike DeWine and Troy Balderson in OH

by Ianthe Metzger

COLUMBUS -- Today, less than one week before the crucial midterm elections, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization, is exposing the record of Vice President Mike Pence, who is scheduled to campaign with anti-equality candidates, including gubernatorial candidate Mike DeWine and Rep. Troy Balderson (OH-12).

“For too long, anti-LGBTQ politicians like Attorney General Mike DeWine and Rep. Troy Balderson have held our state back, pushing policies that hurt Ohio families and undermine LGBTQ progress,” said HRC Ohio State Director Shawn Copeland. “If elected, they will only double down on the Trump-Pence administration’s discriminatory agenda. But we have the opportunity to elect pro-equality champions Richard Cordray and Danny O’Connor, who will fight for working families and move equality forward in both Columbus and Washington. The choice for voters could not be more clear. With less than one week until the crucial midterm elections, HRC is on the ground mobilizing our hundreds of thousands of members and supporters in Ohio to turn out for equality up and down the ballot.”

As DeWine and Balderson align themselves with the anti-LGBTQ Trump-Pence agenda, HRC is mobilizing our members and supporters and nearly 1.8 million Equality Voters in Ohio to elect Richard Cordray as Governor and Danny O’Connor (OH-12) to Congress. HRC has prioritized investments and organizing in Ohio, and has staff and resources on the ground in the state as part of the largest grassroots expansion in the organization’s 38-year history.

As Ohio Attorney General, DeWine defended the state’s marriage ban, stating that LGBTQ people did not deserve “protected-class status.” DeWine also opposes non-discrimination laws protecting Ohioans on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity as well as protections for LGBTQ youth facing discrimination and bullying at school. HRC-endorsed Richard Cordray has a long record working to advance equality. Cordray supports marriage equality and the Ohio Fairness Act, crucial legislation that would bar discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in areas of employment, housing and public accommodations in Ohio. He also supports updating Ohio’s outdated birth certificate laws to allow transgender Ohioans to change the gender marker on their birth certificates.

In the race for Ohio’s 12th Congressional District, incumbent Rep. Troy Balderson is eagerly accepting support from anti-LGBTQ extremist Mike Pence, and has previously voted against anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people. HRC has endorsed Danny O’Connor, a staunch advocate for the LGBTQ community. O’Connor supports marriage equality; legislation to increase funding for HIV and AIDS prevention and treatment; and the Equality Act, landmark federal legislation that would provide the same basic non-discrimination protections to LGBTQ people as other protected groups under federal law. In 2015, O’Connor also submitted an amicus brief in support of the petitioners in the Obergefell v. Hodges marriage equality case at the Supreme Court of the United States.

HRC’s comprehensive “The Real Mike Pence” campaign includes a report, microsite and series of videos that shine a spotlight on Pence’s decades-long crusade against LGBTQ equality, and inside-the-White-House efforts leading the Trump-Pence administration’s attacks on LGBTQ people.

To schedule an interview with HRC Ohio, contact

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.  



Paid for by Human Rights Campaign PAC ( and authorized by Soderberg for Congress

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