Republicans pick ‘anti-LGBT extremist’ to challenge out Senator Tammy Baldwin

Republican voters have picked an anti-LGBT candidate to challenge the only out US Senator, Tammy Baldwin.

Baldwin, the junior United States Senator from Wisconsin, is the only openly gay politician to sit in the US Senate.

However the Democratic firebrand, who co-chairs the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, will face an anti-LGBT challenger in November.

Senator Tammy Baldwin (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Republicans picked State Senator Leah Vukmir to challenge Baldwin in this week’s primary.

The Human Rights Campaign notes that Vukmir “has repeatedly taken extreme positions far outside the mainstream”, and has derailed efforts to pass commonsense protections for LGBT+ people in the state, including protections for LGBT+ youth facing discrimination and bullying at school.

Vukmir has ties to anti-LGBT lobbying groups including the Family Research Council, and has consistently pushed for ‘freedom to discriminate’ exemptions.

Annise Parker of the LGBTQ Victory Fund said: “Wisconsin voters will have a stark choice come November – reelect Senator Tammy Baldwin, the first openly LGBTQ U.S. Senator, or elect an extremist anti-LGBTQ politician who prides herself on the divisiveness that makes Congress so unpopular.

“Leah Vukmir built her career on opposing basic equality for LGBTQ Americans and considers designated hate groups among her closest supporters.

“Wisconsin voters have a proud history of electing and reelecting groundbreaking LGBTQ candidates like Senator Baldwin, and we are confident they will reject Vukmir’s hostile agenda come November.”

Leah Vukmir

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