While Trump was standing up for conspiracy theorists in Miami, Joe Biden was taking questions of substance in Philadelphia. The difference couldn’t have been starker. Among the questions Biden fielded were concerns about the erosion of LGBTQ rights under Donald Trump.
Biden took a question from Nathan Osburn, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Democrat: “Our country’s first Supreme Court gave its first ruling just two blocks from here from 1791 to 1800 and it’s become more polarized since then. Merrick Garland didn’t get a hearing for all of 2016 and Amy Coney Barrett’s being pushed through at the last minute even though millions have already voted. So what do you think about ideas from people like Pete Buttigieg and others to put in place safeguards that will help insure more long term balance and stability? And what do you say to LBGTQ Americans and others who are very worried right now about erosions of their rights and our democracy as a whole?”
Replied Biden: “Well, let me start on the last point and work my way back. I think there’s great reason to be concerned. I was on the road most of the time during these hearings so I didn’t hear many of them. I just got the recaps when I — I — you know be in — I get in late at night from — I’ve been going around the country, Florida and anyway. And — but my reading online what the — what the judge said was she didn’t answer very many questions at all. And I don’t even think she’s laid out much of a judicial philosophy, in terms of the basis upon which she thinks, are their unenumerated rights in the Constitution and — so, number one. So, I think there’s great reason to be concerned for the LGBT community, something I fought very hard for, for a long time, to make sure there’s equality across the board.”
Biden went on to talk about health care: “Number two, I think that, also, health care overall is very much in jeopardy as a consequence of the president’s going to go directly — after this election, directly to the Supreme Court within a month to try to get Obamacare wiped out, after we have already — 10 million people have already lost their insurance from their employer and wants to take 20 million people out of the system as well, plus 100 million people with preexisting conditions. So, there’s a lot at stake.”
Biden also spoke to Mieke Haeck, the “proud mom” of a transgender girl.
Haeck’s question to Biden: “My youngest daughter is transgender. The Trump administration has attacked the rights of transgender people, banning them from military service, weakening non discrimination protections and even removing the word transgender from some government websites. How will you as president reverse this dangerous and discriminatory agenda and insure that the lives and rights of LGBTQ people are protected under U.S. law?”
“I will flat out just change the law, Biden replied. “Every — eliminate those executive orders, number one. You may recall I’m the guy who said — I was raised by a man who I remember I was being dropped off, my — my dad was a high school educated, well read man who was a really decent guy.”
“And I was being dropped off to get an application in the center of our city; Wilmington, Delaware, the corporate capital of the world at the time,” Biden continued. “And these two men, I’m getting out to get an application to be a lifeguard in the African American community because there was a big swimming pool complex. And these two men, well dressed, leaned up and hugged one another and kissed one another. And I’m getting out of the car at the light and I turn to my dad. My dad looked at me and said Joey, it’s simple. They love each other.”
“The idea that an 8-year-old child or a 10-year-old child decides, you know I decided I want to be transgender,” Biden added. “That’s what I think I’d like to be. It would make my life a lot easier. There should be zero discrimination. And what’s happening is too many transgender women of color are being murdered. They’re being murdered. And I think it’s up now to 17, don’t hold me to that number. But it’s — it’s higher now?”
“Yes,” Haeck replied.
“And that’s just this year,” Biden continued. “And so I promise you there is no reason to suggest that there should be any right denied your daughter … that your other daughter has a right to be and do. None, zero. And by the way, my son Beau, passed away; he was the attorney general in the state of Delaware. He was the guy who got the first transgender passed in the state of Delaware and because of a young man who became a woman who worked for him in the attorney general offices.”