Press Secretary Sean Spicer gave his second press conference on Monday (if you count the one on Saturday, which maybe you shouldn’t), and used the opportunity to dodge a question posed about whether President Trump will roll back former President Barack Obama’s Executive Order that protected LGBTQ federal workers from discrimination.
“I have to get back to you on that. I don’t know that we’ve gotten that far in the list of executive orders, but I’d be glad to get back to you... I just don’t know the answer."
The moment happens in the below video right after 2:21:00.
Obama signed the order in question, which bans “workplace discrimination against millions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees of federal contractors and the federal government,” in June 2014.
In the eyes of the Human Rights Campaign, there was only one correct response Spicer should have given to this question:
“Let’s be clear: The Trump administration was unable to answer whether or not they would maintain basic protections for LGBTQ workers,” JoDee Winterhof, senior vice president for policy and political affairs for the Human Rights Campaign, said in a statement. “The only good answer to that question is ‘yes, of course we will.’ And while Mr. Spicer is asking the president for his answer, we’d also like to know if he’ll appoint a pro-equality Supreme Court Justice? Or will he maintain protections for transgender students? Will his nominee for attorney general, who voted against expanding federal hate crimes law to include sexual orientation and gender identity, actually enforce hate crimes protections? Will his State Department commit to advancing LGBTQ equality abroad? We still don’t know the answers to these questions. ”
We, for one, hope that Spicer legitimately didn’t know the answer because there is no talk of ending discrimination protections for LGBTQ people. But we’ll be keeping a close eye on this.