New political group forms to campaign against anti-LGBTQ candidates

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Many elected officials from the LGBT community and veteran democracy activists have united to form the PAC Agenda, a national organization that will work to preserve LGBTQ rights Through campaigning against right-wing candidates.

Founder Ted Bordlon, political communications strategist, will serve as CEO. Malcolm Kenyattathe first openly gay representative of color in Pennsylvania, will serve as president.

The group’s leaders told NBC News that the US Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade and the constitutional right to abortion was a catalyst. In an agreed opinion, Judge Clarence Thomas He called on the court to overturn historic decisions that legalized same-sex marriage and established same-sex intimacy rights.

“When Clarence Thomas wrote his consent, he combined the freedoms of love and choice,” Kenyatta, who was earlier this year He lost to Jon Fetterman In the Pennsylvania Democratic primary for the United States Senate, he said in an interview. “Both are in great danger.”

Unlike groups like the Victory Fund, which focus primarily on electing LGBTQ candidates, PAC’s agenda plans to advertise aggressively against politicians it sees as hostile to LGBTQ rights. the first goal: Doug Mastrianothe Pennsylvania Republican nominee for governor.

“We go after fanatics who can be defeated,” Kenyatta said. “Sometimes these win-win fanatics compete against amazing LGBT candidates. Sometimes they run against people who are allies of our community.”

Mastriano, who faces Democrat Josh Shapiro in the general election, is known for his ultra-conservative views on social and cultural issues. After winning the Republican primary in May, Mastriano used a portion of it victory speech To attack transgender people. On the first day of his administration as governor, he vowed, “You can only use the bathroom your biology and anatomy say.”

Doug Mastriano, the Republican candidate for governor of Pennsylvania, speaks at a rally on August 19 in Pittsburgh.Jeff Swensen / Getty Images

Recently, Mastriano targeted outgoing Democratic Governor Tom Wolf executive order Inhibition of conversion therapy for LGBTQ youth.

“This is so disgusting to me, that bureaucrats, Tom Wolf and Josh Shapiro think it’s OK to come and threaten parents and therapists because their kids might be confused,” Mastriano said last month. radio interview On Talk News in Pennsylvania 103.7.

Bordlon, who is based in Philadelphia, said the group’s initial budget is in six figures with a fundraising goal that would expand the effort into the millions. After Mastriano, Buck’s agenda plans to target several US House races.

“This is a national effort, but we wanted to start in our own backyard and then branch out,” Bordlon said. “Nationally, Mastriano is one of the statewide candidates, if not the worst, when it comes to LGBT issues.”

Selinda Lake, a prominent Democratic pollster, and Joe Trippe, a longtime Democratic advisor who recently worked with the anti-Trump Lincoln Project, will serve as senior advisors.

Other board members include Florida Senators Chevrin Jones and Megan Hunt of Nebraska and board member Joshua Bush of North Dakota. All are Democrats, as well as the first openly LGBT candidates elected to their state legislatures.

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