Democratic National Committee chair Tim Kaine takes questions from Democrats seeking the advancement of LGBT rights in a video made public on Tuesday.
In the video, Kaine responds to what he said were more than 5,000 messages from LGBT people sent to the DNC as part of the “Your Voice Matters” initiative.
Kaine outlines some accomplishments that have been made since the beginning of the Obama administration.
“We have a long way to go, but we’re already making progress for LGBT individuals,” he says. “President Obama and congressional Democrats have already begun to address barriers to equality for LGBT Americans by guaranteeing these families the right to visit and make medical decisions for a partner in America’s hospitals, by enacting hate crimes legislation to protect LGBT Americans — to name just two significant accomplishments.”
Kaine also cites the expansion of the Family & Medical Leave Act as well as new LGBT inclusion for families within Department of Housing & Urban Development policy as other examples of progress forward.
The chair also addresses a query demanding action on passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
“All Americans deserve to be able to work and deserve for their work to be judged solely on its merits,” Kaine says. “That’s why I as governor was the first governor to include protection for LGBT Virginians in the executive order mandating non-discrimination in state employment.”
Kaine says he promises that Democrats are “going to do everything” in their power to pass ENDA in Congress.
No mention of repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act or the expansion of same-sex marriage in several states is made in the video.
UPDATE: It should be noted that Kaine wasn’t the first governor of Virginia to issue an executive order providing workplace protections against gays. Mark Warner took that action in the term preceding Kaine’s. Also, both of these orders issued protections based on sexual orientation, but didn’t explicitly provide protections based on gender identity.