20 U.S. Politicians Who Are Anti-LGBTQ

Ephraim Obare
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Welcome, dear readers, to our veritable who of political not-so-progressiveness. We’re about to take you on a whirlwind tour of 20 US politicians who seem to have missed the memo that it’s the 21st century!

They’ve been making waves, but unfortunately, not for championing the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. We’ve got senators, representatives, and even a few presidential hopefuls in this cavalcade of controversy.

Senator Ted Cruz

Ted Cruz
Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

This Texas senator has been consistently vocal in opposing LGBTQ+ rights, even going so far as to introduce legislation that essentially allows discrimination under the guise of “religious freedom.”

Texas Senator and Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz threw two radical anti-LGBT bills into the mix, aiming to halt nationwide marriage equality. Cruz’s statements, as reported by Bloomberg, “would establish a constitutional amendment shielding states that define marriage as between one woman and one man from legal action.”

Representative Louie Gohmert

Louie Gohmert
Conservative Review/Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

Gohmert has consistently voted against measures to protect LGBTQ+ rights and publicly made numerous discriminatory comments. Most famously, in 2008, he declared that gay soldiers would be a “distraction” and subsequently opposed repealing the ban on openly LGBTQ+ individuals serving in the military.

He was also one of several Republican lawmakers to condemn President Obama for including protections prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity within his executive order in 2014.

Governor Kay Ivey

Governor Kay Ivey
Official photograph of Alabama Lieutenant Governor Kay Ivey via Wikimedia Commons

Despite signing into law a bill that bans transgender athletes from participating in school sports, Ivey has insisted she’s not anti-LGBTQ+. In an April 2021 interview, Ivey claimed she’s “not discriminating against anyone” and that her bill signing is meant to protect women’s sports.

Though she later retracted her statement in a tweet, Ivey referred to same-sex marriage as “abominable” in 2015. She also was one of 20 state attorneys general who signed a legal brief in 2016 asking the Supreme Court to uphold state bans on same-sex marriage. In addition, Ivey also refused to allow Alabama National Guard officers to process benefits for same-sex couples. Ivey’s stance against LGBTQ+ rights indicates her conservative ideologies and has caused many activists to rally against her policies.

Senator Mike Lee

Senator Mike Lee
Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

This Utah senator sponsored the First Amendment Defense Act, which would empower individuals and businesses to discriminate against LGBTQ+ individuals on religious grounds.

Lee also signed an amicus brief in the Masterpiece Cake Supreme Court case that dealt with whether or not religious beliefs could exempt a business from providing services to LGBTQ+ couples. His views and actions have contributed to an atmosphere of intolerance in Utah and across the nation.

Representative Vicky Hartzler

Representative Vicky Hartzler
Vicky Hartzler, 114th Congress via Wikimedia Commons

Hartzler has consistently stood against marriage equality and even attempted to ban transgender individuals from military service.

She has also been a vocal critic of the Equality Act, which would protect LGBTQ+ individuals from discrimination in various areas of public life. Hartzler’s views and actions have created an atmosphere of hostility and marginalization towards LGBTQ+ individuals.

Governor Jim Justice

Governor Jim Justice
Wikimedia Commons

This West Virginia governor signed a law prohibiting transgender girls and women from participating in school sports. Justice also declared June “West Virginia Day of Prayer and Fasting for Natural Marriage, as if this weren’t enough.”

This move was widely viewed as an attempt to rally anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment and erode the advances that have been made in achieving equality for all Americans.

Representative Mo Brooks

Representative Mo Brooks
Official portrait of Congressman Mo Brooks via Wikimedia Commons

Brooks, an Alabama congressman, has a long history of opposing LGBTQ+ rights, including voting against the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act. In 2017, he went on record deriding the “LGBTQ agenda” as a ploy to turn the country into a “socialist caliphate.”

Brooks has since doubled down on his anti-LGBTQ+ stance, calling it an aberration and encouraging further discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals. He has also introduced legislation that would have allowed businesses to discriminate against LGBTQ+ individuals in the name of “religious liberty.”

Senator Marsha Blackburn

Senator Marsha Blackburn
Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

Blackburn has consistently opposed LGBTQ+ rights, including voting against the Equality Act in the Senate. She has also supported legislation making it easier for businesses to deny services to LGBTQ+ individuals. Additionally, Blackburn has criticized the Obama-era guidance protecting transgender students in public schools.

Despite her aggressive stance on LGBTQ+ rights, Blackburn does not typically go out of her way to actively advocate against them. She usually avoids speaking directly about the issue.

Representative Barry Loudermilk

Representative Barry Loudermilk
The United States House of Representatives Office of Photography via Wikimedia Commons

This Georgia congressman has consistently voted against LGBTQ+ rights and has a 0% rating from the Human Rights Campaign. He has voted against expanding hate crime laws, protecting LGBTQ+ people from workplace discrimination, and prohibiting anti-LGBTQ+ conversion therapy.

He also supports the First Amendment Defense Act, which would allow individuals to discriminate against same-sex couples based on religious beliefs. Loudermilk is vocal in his opposition to LGBT rights and often speaks out against them in Congress.

Senator Tom Cotton

Senator Tom Cotton
Michael Vadon via Wikimedia Commons

Cotton, a senator from Arkansas, has consistently opposed LGBTQ+ rights, including voting against the Equality Act. Cotton has also opposed repealing the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy and actively speaks out against same-sex marriage.

He supports a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. He believes businesses should be allowed to refuse service to LGBTQ+ people if it violates their religious beliefs.

Representative Jeff Duncan

Representative Jeff Duncan
Jeff Duncan’s official photo via Wikimedia Commons

Duncan has a zero percent rating from the Human Rights Campaign due to his consistent opposition to LGBTQ+ rights. He has long opposed same-sex marriage, voting against the Respect for Marriage Act and every other bill related to same-sex marriages.

He has also voted several times to defund Planned Parenthood, which provides healthcare services such as HIV/AIDS testing and PrEP medications to LGBTQ+ people. In addition, Duncan opposes amending the 1964 Civil Rights Act to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, claiming that it would infringe on religious freedoms.

Governor Henry McMaster

Governor Henry McMaster
South Carolina National Guard via Wikimedia Commons

This South Carolina governor has signed into law a “religious freedom” bill that enables discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals. He also vetoed a bill that provided gender-neutral bathrooms in state-owned buildings.

McMaster strongly opposes same-sex marriage, claiming it “disrespects centuries of accepted traditional religious doctrine.” He is also a staunch opponent of nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ+ people across all areas, including employment and housing.

Representative Mike Kelly

Representative Mike Kelly
Official portrait of US Rep. Mike Kelly via Wikimedia Commons

This Pennsylvania congressman has made anti-LGBTQ+ comments publicly and voted against LGBTQ+ rights. Kelly voted against the Equality Act, which would have provided nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ+ people in employment, housing, and public accommodations. He also voted against a bill to protect transgender people from health care and insurance services discrimination. In addition, he has expressed his opposition to same-sex marriage on multiple occasions.

Kelly believes that “God did not create man to testify to his own existence,” and that same-sex marriage would “tear away at the fabric of society.” His words have caused distress among LGBTQ+ people in Pennsylvania, and many call for him to apologize for his views.

Senator Tim Scott

Senator Tim Scott
The work of Tom Williams is recognized on the list of public domain CQ authors via Wikimedia Commons.

Scott has consistently opposed LGBTQ+ rights, including voting against the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act. He also voted against the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would have protected people from being fired based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Scott has consistently voted for laws that allow businesses to discriminate against LGBTQ+ customers.

Representative Bob Good

Representative Bob Good
Official Portrait of Representative Bob Good via Wikimedia Commons

Good has a zero percent rating from the Human Rights Campaign due to his consistent opposition to LGBTQ+ rights. He voted against the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act and sponsored a bill to legalize discrimination against LGBTQ+ customers in Virginia.

Good has repeatedly opposed marriage equality and civil rights for transgender individuals, voting against the Equality Act in 2019.

Governor Bill Lee

Governor Bill Lee
Lynn Freeny via Wikimedia Commons

This Tennessee governor signed into law multiple anti-LGBTQ+ bills, including one banning transgender students from participating in school sports. He also signed the Tennessee Natural Marriage Defense Act, which prohibits same-sex marriage.

Lee also opposed the Equality Act and signed an executive order that allows adoption and foster care agencies to discriminate against LGBTQ+ parents.

Senator Marco Rubio

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Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

Rubio has long opposed marriage equality and civil rights for LGBTQ+ people. He has repeatedly voted against the Equality Act and supports allowing businesses to deny services to gay and transgender customers on religious grounds.

He also co-sponsored a bill allowing adoption agencies to discriminate against same-sex couples who wish to adopt.

Senator Josh Hawley

Senator Josh Hawley
U.S. Senator Josh Hawley speaking with attendees at the 2022 AmericaFest at the Phoenix Convention Center in Phoenix, Arizona, via Wikimedia Commons

This Missouri senator has made anti-LGBTQ+ comments publicly and voted against LGBTQ+ rights. Specifically, Hawley has voted against the Equality Act and led a successful effort to block the nomination of Chai Feldblum, an openly gay labor lawyer who supports LGBT+ rights.

Hawley has also attacked same-sex marriage as “destructive to our society” and denounced transgender rights as “radical social experimentation.” He argued that allowing same-sex couples to adopt would “undermine the traditional understanding of marriage” and publicly supported a bill allowing adoption agencies to discriminate against same-sex couples who wish to adopt.

Representative Paul Gosar

Representative Paul Gosar
Paul Gosar, member of the United States House of Representatives via Wikimedia Commons

Gosar has a zero percent rating from the Human Rights Campaign due to his consistent opposition to LGBTQ+ rights.

He has co-sponsored bills to block same-sex marriage and adoption, called for a ban on transgender military servicemembers, and supported DOMA. Gosar also proposed an amendment allowing employers to cite religious beliefs to justify firing LGBTQ+ employees.

Governor Kristi Noem

Governor Kristi Noem
Wikimedia Commons

This South Dakota governor signed a bill prohibiting transgender girls and women from participating in school sports. She also signed a religious freedom bill permitting adoption agencies to reject same-sex couples based on their beliefs.

Additionally, Noem has taken steps to prevent South Dakota cities from passing their ordinances protecting LGBTQ+ individuals from discrimination.

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Author

  • Ephraim Obare

    Ephraim Obare is a versatile member of the Frenz Hub writing team, bringing a rich background in economics to his work. An avid swimmer, reader, and cyclist, Ephraim blends analytical insights with his diverse interests.

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