Jeff Sessions

84th United States Attorney General
Former U.S. Senator from Alabama

7.30.18—Attorney General Jeff Sessions announces the creation of a “Religious Liberty” Task Force at the Department of Justice’s Religious Liberty Summit. As stated by Sessions, the group’s purpose is to ensure that the Justice Department upholds the administration’s guidance for religious exemptions, which he released in October.

10.10.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions openly defends LGBTQ discrimination when discussing the Masterpiece Cakeshop SCOTUS case in an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network.

10.6.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions issues a sweeping “religious exemptions” guidance which invites taxpayer-funded federal agencies, government employees, and government contractors to legally discriminate against LGBTQ employees as long as they cite a religious belief as the reason for doing it.

10.5.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions reverses a policy that provided non-discrimination protections for transgender people in the workplace under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

9.5.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions announces the end of the DACA program, which protected an estimated 800,000 young undocumented immigrants, including 36,000 LGBTQ DREAMers, from detention and deportation.

7.26.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions files a brief opposing workplace nondiscrimination protections for the LGBTQ community under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in the case Zarda v. Altitude Express.

 —7.11.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions delivers closed-press remarks at a Summit on Religious Liberty hosted by the anti-LGBTQ hate group, Alliance Defending Freedom

6.28.17—The Department of Justice ejects reporters covering a DOJ Pride event hosted by LGBTQ affinity groups for federal workers.

4.14.17—Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Justice Department withdraws lawsuit accusing North Carolina of discriminating against the LGBTQ community in response to HB2, despite the similarities of the HB142 replacement. 

2.22.17—With help of President Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded Title IX protections for transgender students in our nation’s schools. 

—A former deputy, a black man, testified that Sessions called him “boy,” warned him about how he talked to white people, and said that Sessions thought the Ku Klux Klan was “OK, until he learned that they smoked marijuana.”

—A Justice Department lawyer testified that Sessions described the NAACP and the American Civil Liberties Union as “un-American” and “Communist-inspired.”

Supported the Federal Marriage Amendment in both 2004 and 2006, claiming that “leftists” were out to “destroy the traditional definition of marriage.”

Claimed the Supreme Court’s ruling overturning sodomy laws “divorced morality from law.”

—While attempting to defund the National Endowment of the Arts, echoed social conservative claims that “the National Endowment for the Arts showed explicit homosexual activities on the screen using a $31,000 grant.”

Condemned California federal judge for finding the state’s discriminatory marriage ban to be unconstitutional, claiming he “was citing his own views, emotions and feelings” rather than the law.

Opposed the nomination of US Supreme Court justice Elena Kagan in large part because of what he perceived as her LGBTQ support. (More here.)

Reportedly fought to stop LGBTQ conference: As Alabama’s attorney general in 1996, Sessions attempted to stop the Southeastern Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual College Conference from meeting at the University of Alabama under a state law passed in 1992 that made it illegal for public universities to fund in any way a group that promotes “actions prohibited by the sodomy and sexual misconduct laws.”

Implied the U.S. Supreme Court was not allowed to find a right to marriage equality and that he might continue the fight: “‘What this court did was unconstitutional. I don’t think they had the power to do what they did. There’s nothing in the constitution for such a result, no mention of marriage in the constitution.” 

Cosponsored the so-called First Amendment Defense Act, which would allow opponents of marriage equality to discriminate against LGBTQ (or even supportive) customers and contractors.

Cosponsored the so-called State Marriage Defense Act, a bill designed to circumvent federal protections for same-sex married couples.

Voted against the repeal of the military’s discriminatory “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

Referred to a gay sexual orientation as having “gay tendencies.”

Known for his hardline stances on immigration, for decades opposing any bill that includes a path to citizenship.

The GLAAD Accountability Project catalogs anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and discriminatory actions of politicians, commentators, organization heads, religious leaders, and legal figures, who have used their platforms, influence and power to spread misinformation and harm LGBTQ people.