On the day the Food & Drug Administration announced last week the rule making the change was final, O’Malley via Twitter became the first 2016 presidential candidate to say the new policy doesn’t go far enough, calling it “discriminatory.”
— Martin O'Malley (@MartinOMalley) December 21, 2015
Clinton made no similar criticism on Twitter account (although in the same week she tweeted in favor of LGBT adoption and against anti-transgender violence).
Xochitl Hinojosa, a Clinton spokesperson, confirmed to the Washington Blade days after the FDA announcement the candidate wants to change the new policy to one based on individual risk.
“Hillary Clinton believes we need to get to a scientifically-grounded, risk-based policy,” Hinojosa said. “She would like to see an approach that protects public health while treating people as individuals, not as a group.”
The Bernard Sanders campaign didn’t respond to repeated requests to comment on the new blood policy. The Blade could find nothing on his Twitter account on the change.
The Vermont senator was among 81 lawmakers who in July signed a letter led by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) urging the FDA to declare the new policy a transitionary step that would lead to a policy based on individual risk.
The FDA insists the requirement for one year of abstinence is based on science, but LGBT advocates say the policy is discrimination against gay and bisexual men and unnecessary given current testing procedures.