House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) compared the “stigma” of supporting people with AIDS to that of supporting transgender people in a virtual Human Rights Campaign conference with Representative David Cicilline (D-RI) to promote the newly passed Equality Act.
Pelosi said it was her “purpose” when she first arrived in Congress to bring attention to the AIDS epidemic. “So I said it [on the house floor] because it was my purpose.”
She continued, “But what it told me was that there were, or some, not those people [San Franciscans] exactly, but a stigma to all of this [AIDS].” She said it taught her, “we have to get community-based research for prevention and care, we have to fight the discrimination of it all.”
“There are so many people on the outside fighting the fight, and in doing so being a model for others to fight their fight,” Pelosi said.
“This goes to David’s earlier point that we believe we can get this [Equality Act] done in the Senate one way or another,” she noted.
Cicilline is one of nine openly LGBT members of the House of Representatives.