HARRIS: It was my joy.
A: How will you leverage your liberal Californian perspective when reaching out to voters in small conservative areas?
HARRIS: I'll tell them the story of Valentine's weekend in 2004. Back when a lot of Democrats were talking about civil unions, in February of 2004, I was performing marriages. I arrived at San Francisco City Hall that day, it was a Saturday, Valentine's weekend, and wrapped around the entire city block were families of every race, of every size, of every age, balloons and teddy bears and gifts, and there was something about arriving there that day that, when you have a group of people that is so large who are so full of pure joy in one place, you can feel it. Because it was a day where people who love each other had the ability for their love to be recognized by law. We must respect and always encourage these kinds of loving relationships.
HARRIS: How can we defend that our LGBTQ brothers and sisters are treated differently under the law when they walk into their place of work? I will fight for equality. We saw great success in terms of marriage. But there is still not full equality for members of the LGBTQ community, and that relates to housing, it relates to employment, it relates to education, and many other issues.
HARRIS: I will put resources into ensuring that all people are safe, with a particular understanding of some of the most vulnerable communities. We know certain populations are more vulnerable to hate based on other people's prejudice and racism and hateful thoughts. And we as a society must acknowledge the truth of that and then make sure that we create safe communities in which they can exist.
HARRIS: Gay black men are twice as likely to contract HIV and AIDS. One of the issues also that is relevant to this point is the affordability of medications such as PrEP, which is extremely expensive. I have been a leader in the US Senate to say that it should be covered by insurance and money should not be the barrier to access to PrEP, which is obviously a life-saving drug. In terms of HIV-AIDS rates among black men in particular, it is still much higher because the hierarchy still exists within the community around access to health care, housing, employment, and things of that nature. So I will, as president, I commit to you, deal with all of those, but also we need to deal with it in the context of having a commitment, which is my commitment, that within a generation we will end HIV-AIDS.
HARRIS: One of the most powerful tools in the hands of the president is that microphone she holds. The real strength of a leader is based not on who you beat down, it's based on who you lift up. We have to create a safe place for those youth to go, where they can be in a peer- based place, where they can talk about how they are experiencing the world in a way that nurtures and strengthens them.
HARRIS: Part of what I plan to do is through the tax code, so that if anyone is spending more than 30 percent of their income in rent plus utilities, you get a tax credit. And part of my plan is to create grants for people who live in federally subsidized housing or in historically red-lined communities to give them down payments and closing costs for homeownership. And then we need to create incentives for affordable housing.
The above quotations are from LGBTQ Town Hall: hosted by CNN in Los Angeles.
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