Monday, October 05, 2009

President Obama to Keynote October 10th HRC Nat'l Dinner

The HRC website announced it today:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization, announced today that President Barack Obama will deliver the keynote address at the 13th Annual National Dinner on Saturday, October 10th, in Washington, D.C. U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy will also present the first-ever Edward M. Kennedy National Leadership Award to Judy and Dennis Shepard. The award is named in honor of the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA), a champion in the fight for LGBT equality.

And here's what the NYTimes had to say:

President Obama will speak to a gathering of gay rights activists this weekend, a day before thousands of people are expected to march on Washington in a demonstration calling for greater legal protections for gays, lesbians and transgendered Americans.

Mr. Obama’s appearance on Saturday at the annual dinner for the Human Rights Campaign, a leading gay rights advocacy group, represents a significant show of support for gay rights at a time when many prominent gay and lesbian activists have been questioning the president’s commitment to their issues.

Many gay rights activists have become increasingly vocal about their frustration over what they see as tepid support from Mr. Obama. While the president has professed support for overturning the ban on gays in the military and called the law that precludes federal recognition of same-sex marriages discriminatory, he has not engaged on gay rights issues as actively as some had hoped.

While it remains to be seen what Mr. Obama’s appearance at the dinner will do to his standing in the eyes of gay rights activists, his speech may mollify some of their concerns.

His appearance will mark only the second time a sitting president has spoken to the Human Rights Campaign. The first time was in 1997 when Bill Clinton spoke to the group. That was the first time a sitting president had ever addressed a gay rights organization.


john said...

In 1997 when Bill Clinton spoke to the HRC dinner after screwing the GLBT community over by pushing DOMA through Congress. Personally, I'll be happy if they just send a nice note provided they actually do something for our benefit while in office.

IT said...

Hear hear.

I'm expecting some high-falutin' words....and no real progress. Hope I'm wrong.

But as they say, the gAyTIM is closed: my political dollars are going to marriage equality and DP issues in the states. The Dem party nationally is doing nothing for the GLBT community. glad to return the favor.