Lawmaker speaks out for his transgender granddaughter’s rights

PinkNews logo surrounded by illustrated images including a rainbow, unicorn, PN sign and pride flag.

A prominent Democratic congressman has revealed that he has a transgender granddaughter, while speaking out in favour of trans rights.

Mike Honda – who has long been an advocate for LGBT rights within the Democratic party – spoke out after lawmakers in a number of states prepared measures which would target trans people.

Sharing a photo of himself with his granddaughter Malisa, he tweeted: “As the proud grandpa of a transgender grandchild, I hope she can feel safe at school without fear of being bullied.”

The photo has been shared over 8000 times, and the 73-year-old later took to Vine to thank people for their support.

He said: “Malisa and I are blessed and humbled by your support. We want to say: thank you so much.”

He told the LA Times: “It makes me believe that we are closer than ever to a society where everyone is accepted for who they are.

“On behalf of my granddaughter and daughter, along with the rest of my family, let me say ‘thank you’ to everyone who has replied, retweeted, or commented their support through social media.

“We need to ensure that our LGBTQ youth are never bullied because of their real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

“These children need our protection and our love.”

Mr Honda previously sponsored a bill in 2009 that expanded hate crime protections to include actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability.