Madam President?  Is it possible?  Can Hillary pull off the first step in her road to the White House?  Will she be the Democratic candidate? 

If we do have a chance to vote for Hillary in the next presidential election, here are five things you need to know before pressing any buttons. 

1.  Hillary, sexual orientation and the military

Hillary Clinton coined the phrase, “Gay soldiers need to shoot straight, not be straight.”  In her book, “Living History,” she argues, “One of Bill's [Clinton] first challenges as commander in chief became the promise he made during the campaign to let gays and lesbians serve in the military as long as their sexual orientation did not in any way compromise their performance or unit cohesion. I agreed with the commonsense proposition that the code of military conduct should be enforced strictly against behavior, not sexual orientation.”  In 1999, on “Inside Politics” Hillary also stated that “Fitness to serve in the military should be based on one’s conduct, not one’s sexual orientation.” 

2.  On hate crimes and guns in America

Hillary is also tough on hate crimes.  In 2000, Hillary stated on her website that, “I am deeply saddened and outraged by the recent incidents of hate crimes, and I hope our outrage will strengthen our resolve to address these scourges of gun violence and hate crimes in America today. There is no place for violence or intolerance in this country, and it is urgent that we address these issues now.” 

3.  On protecting the GLBT community

Although the bill never passed, Hillary voted to expand the definition of hate crimes to include sexual orientation.  Senate Bill 625 was largely voted down by a Republican dominated Senate, but if passed by both houses would have incorporated acts committed because of a victim's sex, sexual orientation and disability to be included as a hate crime.  Even more importantly, it would have permitted the federal government to help states prosecute these types of hate crimes.

4.  Hillary’s take on domestic partnerships

How does Hillary feel about domestic partnerships?  Believe it or not, she has said publicly that she supports domestic partnerships.  In 2000, on CNN, Hillary declared that “We ought to be providing domestic partnership benefits for people who are in homosexual and lesbian relationships.”

5.  Drum roll please……she voted NO on a constitutional ban of same sex marriage

Unlike the current President, Hillary did not support the bill that would have banned same-sex marriage in the United States (Marriage Protection Amendment).  The important thing to note here is that if passed, this would have preempted any state laws already in existence.  Furthermore, states would not have been able to decide for themselves whether or not they want to ban same-sex marriage.

These are just a few of the issues in a sea of debate going on between the isles. Regardless of which political candidate you support, it goes without saying that Hillary has a track record of being open minded and fair to the GLBT community. Her campaign Web site can be viewed here.

This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

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