Jerame Davis

White House LGBT Liaison, Brian Bond, Moving to DNC

Filed By Jerame Davis | July 08, 2011 5:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics, The Movement
Tags: Brian Bond, DNC, LGBT Liaison, White House

Brian BondWhite House Deputy Director of Public Engagement Brian Bond, who also served as the White House's LGBT liaison, will be leaving his post to take up a position as the Democratic National Committee's Director of Constituency Outreach. From the Washington Blade:

Gay Deputy Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, Brian Bond, is leaving the Obama administration after nearly three years to take up a position as the Director of Constituency Outreach at the Democratic National Committee.

According to Mike Allen of Politico, when Bond starts up at the DNC in August he'll join gay former White House Regional Director, Office of Political Affairs Jeffrey Lerner, now the DNC Political Director to form the outreach team.

Previously, Bond served on the 2008 Obama Presidential campaign as the National Constituency Director. He's also served as the DNC's Gay & Lesbian Leadership Council Executive Director and as the Executive Director of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund as well as Executive Director of the Missouri Democratic Party.

This is a good move by the DNC and will ensure that LGBT outreach is a primary concern in the 2012 election cycle. Let's hope the White House picks another outstanding LGB or T rock star to fill that position.

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Nice to see, but outreach means nothing if not coupled with actual advocacy and legislation. Brian Bond talking about our rights will not impress me. Senate hearings held on ENDA (with actual trans witnesses this time) will impress me. It's put up or shut up time for Democrats. Enough talk, it's time for some real action or it's time to replace these people with those who will actually do something for us, not just talk about it.

Becky, the list of accomplishments by this administration is long and deep. I'm pissed that ENDA hasn't passed too, but that doesn't mean I don't give them credit where it is due. There have been concrete steps not only to move us forward on the path to equality, but to fundamentally alter how the federal government sees us and our issues. The changes in the departments and agencies will totally change how the LGBT community interacts with the government. Let alone the legal work, like the recent Golinksi brief outlining the governments argument that we should be viewed as a suspect class and details how the government has been party to the institutionalized discrimination we've all faced. This is a big deal.

I understand the frustration, but the progress is real. Of course there is more work to do, but we have to give credit for the real work that's been done.

Frankly Jer, I have a tough time buying that. According to Diego Sanchez, Barney Frank's senior aide and a transman, they had the votes to pass ENDA in the 111th Congress, but they did DADT instead and threw the rest of us under the bus yet again. I counted no less than at least seven times that George Miller promised ENDA would get a vote but it never materialized.

These people make promises as easily as breathing, but they consistently fail to keep those promises. They're great at talking about supporting our rights, but they stink at doing the hard work it takes to turn all those pretty words into real action.

Honestly, I don't see why we should be supporting this kind of self-serving politics with our money or our votes. If the current crop of Democrats are unwilling to stand up for real American equality then they need to be replaced with those who will honor those values with more than just words.

Protecting just the tiny fraction of 1% of the American LGBT workforce who are employed by the government and leaving the rest of to twist in the wind is unconscionable and unacceptable, particularly in this economy.

It's time we stopped rewarding serial failure and started lopping heads.

Becky, no matter how many times you (or Diego, who is a dear friend) insist there were the votes to pass ENDA, you don't know it to be true. I can say with almost certainty there were not enough votes in the Senate to pass it. Maybe there were in the House, but I also understand there were not enough votes to assuredly dodge a motion to recommit. There were even people on record (Brad Ellsworth being one of them) who said they'd possibly vote for ENDA, but they'd definitely vote to recommit.

That's not the fault of "Dems" it's the fault of some Dems and whole fucking lot of Republicans. If you don't have enough votes, you don't have enough votes. We had this discussion before - with nearly 500 pieces of legislation passed in the House that the Senate never took up, what good would it do to add yet another bill they'd never consider?

You know ENDA is my issue too. But I also realize that there was no path through the Senate for ENDA in the 111th. The ridiculous use of the filibuster hampered any effort to get real work done in the Senate.

You act like there are no good Democrats and that's just asinine. We don't have a majority of good Democrats in Congress. We can't pass legislation without those pro-equality Democrats. Sorry, that's how it works. We shouldn't stop supporting the good ones simply because the bad ones don't vote our way. That's called cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Obama has done more for LGBT people than all other presidents combined. Our movement is racking up more wins than it ever has. This is an argument that just doesn't jibe with reality, Becky. Sorry.

Y'know Jer, you should listen to my show. I've interviewed people like Dana Beyer, Mara Kesling, John Aravosis, and several others,and while there have been a variety of reasons offered for why ENDA didn't get a vote in the 111th, everyone agrees on one thing: There wasn't enough mainstream media coverage (read: on-air MSM face-time for Democrats) for the party leadership to bother facing down the GOP over the bill.

Now we're seeing the Dems run away even faster than before. Personally, I think it's quite telling that Obama didn't bother to mention ENDA or LGBT workplace rights in his Pride proclamation this year, unlike he did last year, or when he was campaigning for President in '08. Neither did Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. After New York passed same sex marriage, Sen. Gillibrand, came out in favor of repealing DOMA not protecting LGBT American workers, even though it's still legal in her own home state to fire trans people and throw them out of their homes just for being who they are.

Add to that George Miller's serial lying and the extreme hypocrisy of Nancy Pelosi, who we couldn't depend on to even get ENDA a vote in the House despite the fact that she represents a district in the city with the highest percentage of LGBT residents in the entire country.

Is this really what you're defending? Really?

And yes, I know full well that there are good Democrats out there, those who actually stand up for their values. I'm lucky enough to be a constituent of one, Rush Holt, one of only seven(!) Democratic members of Congress who refused to vote for an ENDA in '07 without transgender protections. The problem is that the true progressives in the Democratic Party aren't in the leadership, we have to suffer with "leaders" like Pelosi and Reid, who run the other way the second the going gets rough or even just inconvenient for themselves and their Party.

If this crop of Democrats couldn't get the job done even with control of both Houses of Congress and the White House, as they swore up and down that they would if they gained that control, why on earth should anyone believe it'll be any different next time?

We've seen where hope gets us with these people, even when they have the wind at their backs. Now it's time for change.

And what happen to that list that was supposed to be the low hanging fruit that the Obama administration could do and how many did they meet. From my memory it was few until the gay organization pulled it from their website as not to embarrass the president. And I don't give him credit for DADT repeal because many insiders have said he tried to put off the repeal until this year.
And now his argument that marriage is a state's right issue is doing a great disservice to us. By invoking state's right he gives credence to Prop 8 and other anti-gay measures passed by the states.

Kathy Padilla | July 8, 2011 5:49 PM

Good luck! And thanks for all the hard work. A lot of important trans policy work had Brian's help.