BACKGROUNDER: 2020 Candidate Joe Walsh’s Anti-LGBTQ Record Shows He Would Also Be Hostile to LGBTQ Americans

Like President Trump, Walsh has used the power of his public profile to repeatedly attack the LGBTQ community

ICYMI: Joe Walsh insists that a “transgender man is a woman”

NEW YORK – GLAAD, the world’s largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization, today released the following background document to the media on former Illinois Republican congressman Joe Walsh, who announced Sunday morning that he would challenge President Trump in the upcoming Republican presidential primary. While President Trump has issued more than 124 attacks on the LGBTQ community since 2017, the former congressman has an anti-LGBTQ record that would likely continue to roll back acceptance for LGBTQ Americans across the nation. 

Former Congressman Joe Walsh was a vocal supporter of Trump during the 2016 presidential election, but Walsh has become a critic of the President despite having used similar rhetoric against marginalized communities, including against LGBTQ Americans, in public life. Below is a sampling of Walsh’s anti-LGBTQ record.


— In Congress, voted to prevent government funds from being used in ways that ran counter to the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

— Campaigned against marriage equality: “Finally, I'm a strong supporter of traditional marriage and believe that a marriage can only exist between one man and one woman.”

— Wrote: “I don't believe in the whole concept of "hate crimes."

— Applauded the poor ratings performance of some LGBTQ-inclusive TV shows, writing “Good. Hollywood can’t shove it down our throats.”

— Insisted: “A transgender “man” is a woman”

— Tweeted: “I told Thomas Jefferson that the government was forcing a grandmother to arrange flowers for a gay wedding. He said, "Grab your Musket!!!"

— Referred to LGBTQ activists as “constitutional terrorists.”

— Tweeted: “At Transgender Summer Camp, kids as young as 4yrs are told they’re ‘normal.’ 4yrs old. That’s just wrong.”

— Claimed Christian vendors should be able to turn away LGBTQ people, calling a ruling in favor of an anti-gay photographer “a proper court ruling.”

— Tweeted: “I will now carry my gun anywhere, even in a "gun free zone" bakery. If a bakery can't say no to your gay wedding it can't say no to my gun.”

— Said openly gay figure skater Adam Rippon refusing to meeting with anti-LGBTQ Vice President Pence was an example of “the intolerant Left at it again.”

— Claimed “Islam hates #LGBT. Muslims hate gays. If you are gay, Islam wants you dead.”

— Insisted: “Liberals don’t care about gay people. They only care about gay votes.”

— Tweeted: “Go ahead & identify as a woman. Godspeed. But you can’t pee next to my 17 yr old daughter. Ok?”