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Joe Biden is gunning for US president, but what’re his LGBTI views like?

Joe Biden is gunning for US president, but what’re his LGBTI views like?

Joe Biden

Former vice president Joe Biden announced today (25 April) that he’s seeking Democratic nomination to challenge President Trump in 2020.

In his third presidential bid, Biden is marshalling his over 40 years political experience in a campaign to be future leader of the US, CNN reported.

However, how does the contender stand on LGBTI rights? He might have officiated a marriage between two gay White House staffers, but what does his voting record look like?

Biden’s LGBTI voting record

Across his decades-long career as vice president and Delaware senator, Biden’s views on LGBTI areas have changed.

Back in 1996, Biden voted in favor of the Defence of Marriage Act which defined marriage as between a male and female. 10 years later, he voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment.

But tides changed. When asked by David Gregory about his views on marriage equality in 2012, he was positive.

He said he was ‘absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties.

‘And quite frankly, I don’t see much of a distinction beyond that.’

This was big, considering he came out in favor of marriage equality before Obama did.

While he did vote in favor of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ he later said the courts should appeal it. Which it was under the Obama administration, in which he was Vice President for from 2009 to 2017.

After Trump announced a ban on trans people serving in the military in 2017, Biden tweeted: ‘Every patriotic American who is qualified to serve in our military should be able to serve. Full stop.’

Biden on Chechnya and Brunei

Two major atrocities that have defined LGBTI civil rights this decade have been Chechnya and Brunei.

In 2017, Biden denounced Chechnya authorities for their rounding-up, torturing, and murdering of LGBTI people.

He stated his hope that the Trump administration confronts Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov for their ‘egregious violations of human rights.’

While he condemned Brunei’s government for introducing capital punishment for LGBTI people. He tweeted: ‘Stoning people to death for homosexuality or adultery is appalling and immoral.

‘There is no excuse – not culture, not tradition – for this kind of hate and inhumanity.’

Could Biden be president?

When you Google ‘Joe Biden,’ the next word the search engine predicts you will type is ‘age.’

Joe Biden is vaulting himself into a blue-tie wearing field of hopefuls that are getting younger and younger. Fellow candidate Pete Buttigieg is only 37, compared to Biden’s age of 76.

If voters elect him, he would be 78 on Inauguration Day in 2021.

Some see Biden as a heir to former President Barack Obama. A brand Biden is eager to adopt considering he labelled himself an ‘Obama-Biden Democrat’ back in early April.

As he joins a heated race with 19 other Democrat candidates, voters may be wary of Biden’s four previous national bids. Two presidential campaigns in 1988 and 2008, and two as Obama’s running mate.

Biden’s tact for the race remains unclear. Whether he will seek to rebuild bridges between the parties or satisfy the Democrat’s hunger for a challenger to Trump.

However, as he offers himself as a leader for a country wracked by internal conflict, political pundits will have to wait to see if his moderation can indeed attract a wide cross-section of voters.

See also

Joe Biden officiates second gay marriage – see pics of the happy couple here

Joe Biden launches project to encourage families to accept their LGBTI kids

Cynthia Nixon calls out Joe Biden for describing Mike Pence as ‘decent’