Biden Calls Transgender Discrimination 'Civil Rights Issue of Our Time'

The Vice President spoke with the mother of Miss Trans New England at a campaign event in Sarasota, Fla.

BY Julie Bolcer

October 31 2012 11:22 AM ET

Vice President Joe Biden spoke with a woman at a campaign event Tuesday in Sarasota, Fla., telling her that discrimination against transgender people is the “civil rights issue of our time.”

The woman, Linda Carragher Bourne, said something inaudible to the Vice President, to which Biden responded with the words, “civil rights issue of our time,” according to a pool report. Bourne later told reports that her daughter was Miss Trans New England and she had asked if the Vice President would help.

"A lot of my friends are being killed, and they don't have the civil rights yet. These guys are gonna make it happen," Bourne told the pool about the Democratic ticket.

Vice President Biden has shown a track record of speaking his mind on LGBT issues. He said he was “absolutely comfortable” with marriage equality in May, three days before President Barack Obama announced his personal support. The Vice President’s statement is widely acknowledged to have moved up the President’s timeline.

Last August, Vice President Biden met with a group of LGBT advocates in Provincetown, Mass. and said they were “freeing the souls of the American people,” while he credited them with advancing the “civil rights of every straight American.”

Tags: Transgender

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