Former Vice President Joe Biden is backtracking on a comment he made about Vice President Mike Pence being “a decent guy.”
“The fact of the matter is it was followed on by a guy, who’s a decent guy, our vice president, who stood before this group of allies and leaders and said, ‘I’m here on behalf of President Trump,’ and there was dead silence. Dead silence,” Pence said at the University of Nebraska-Omaha on Thursday.
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— Early Start (@EarlyStart) March 1, 2019
Cynthia Nixon called Biden out for the comment, calling Pence “America’s most anti-LGBT elected leader.“ Nixon, a lesbian, asked the former vice president to “consider how this falls on the ears of our community.”
Biden responded directly to the former New York gubernatorial candidate.
“You’re right, Cynthia,” he tweeted Thursday. “I was making a point in a foreign policy context, that under normal circumstances a Vice President wouldn’t be given a silent reaction on the world stage. But there is nothing decent about being anti-LGBTQ rights, and that includes the Vice President.”
You’re right, Cynthia. I was making a point in a foreign policy context, that under normal circumstances a Vice President wouldn’t be given a silent reaction on the world stage.
But there is nothing decent about being anti-LGBTQ rights, and that includes the Vice President.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) February 28, 2019
Biden has made standing up for LGBT rights a focus of his post-vice presidency legacy. This summer, he announced the campaign “As You Are” through his foundation that focuses on family acceptance of LGBT youth.
“We can work together to change the culture and ensure a bright future for the LGBTQ young people of America,” he said in the announcement of the initiative in August.
Pence, on the other hand, has been criticized for promoting ani-LGBT legislation throughout his political career, including a constitutional amendment that would have defined marriage as between a man and a woman.
The former Indiana governor also opposed legislation that would’ve prevented workplace discrimination of LGBT people and was against the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
Now, he is a part of the administration that is moving forward with plans to ban transgender people from serving in the military.