The votes are in: Barack Obama has been reelected to serve our country for another four years. Considered alongside the historic victories for marriage equality and the election of LGBT candidates and allies to Congress, this is an election that advances equality in profound ways – both at home and abroad. We congratulate the President on this historic victory and renew our commitment to partner with his Administration to support vigorous American leadership in the fight for LGBT human and civil rights.
In previous blogs (see related posts links below), we’ve laid out an international equality agenda that we hope the new Administration will pursue over the next four years. That agenda includes:
- A clear stand in our bilateral and multilateral diplomacy against the mistreatment and discrimination that impact too many foreign LGBT populations;
- Employment protections for LGBT citizens, and a partnership with corporate America to encourage those protections in the overseas American workplace;
- Greater efforts to ensure that faith, while respected and preserved, does not intrude into government responsibilities to ensure fair and equal treatment in our laws at home and in our assistance programs abroad;
- Elimination of inequities in our country’s current immigration laws, which serve LGBT citizens so poorly; and
- Using the foreign policy and developmental assistance tools of all relevant USG departments and agencies to advance respect for LGBT rights as a critical component of the values our country represents.
We reiterate that agenda today, and call for its bold pursuit. The next four years will be a critical period for LGBT Americans to achieve many of the fairness goals that have eluded us for decades. But in equal measure, American leadership will be crucial in ensuring that LGBT rights are fully integrated into U.S. and international human rights policy. If we as a country are true to our founding values and ideals, we must stand clearly and forcefully for the fundamental freedoms and rights that have eluded LGBT people internationally, and to support policies in their defense.
Over four years, President Obama has stood firmly for these freedoms and rights. He and Secretary of State Clinton have earned our respect and gratitude. But there is more to accomplish if we are to anchor respect for LGBT people in policies and procedures, and to ensure that the leadership shown to date is an enduring feature of American diplomacy.
With the President’s continued leadership, our country can, in four years’ time, become a shining example of a nation that lives up to its ideals. We pledge to be an avid partner in pursuing that goal as the new Administration and Congress take their places next year.
Look for future blogs on the global impact of the election results in the United States and our policy objectives for the next four years.