(WASHINGTON) — Just last month the White House said Donald Trump is "respectful and supportive of LGBTQ rights," but following Wednesday's reversal of Obama-era guidance directing schools to allow transgender students to use the bathroom that matches their gender identity, the president's alleged affinity for such rights has been questioned.
In fact, it's a bit of a turnaround for the president, who has spoken relatively positively about the LGBT community in recent months.
"President Donald J. Trump is determined to protect the rights of all Americans, including the LGBTQ community," the White House said in a statement in late January, to assure the LGBT community that he would continue to enforce an Obama-era executive order protecting the rights of LGBT federal employees and contractors. "President Trump continues to be respectful and supportive of LGBTQ rights, just as he was throughout the election.
The statement added, "The President is proud to have been the first ever GOP nominee to mention the LGBTQ community in his nomination acceptance speech, pledging then to protect the community from violence and oppression."
And Trump was also relatively supportive of the LGBT community during the campaign.
When asked during a TV interview in April if Olympian-turned-reality TV star Caitlyn Jenner would be free to use any bathroom at Trump Tower, the then-presidential candidate said, "That is correct."
Those comments came while North Carolina's so-called bathroom bill — that banned people from using bathrooms didn’t match the sex indicated on their birth certificate — was being hotly debated.
During the same aforementioned interview, Trump said transgender individuals in North Carolina should be able to "use the bathroom they feel is appropriate." He added that state lawmakers should "leave it the way it is."
A couple of months later, at a rally in June in Dallas, Trump proclaimed "the LGBT community is starting to like Donald Trump very, very much lately."
As for his position on same-sex marriage, Trump has been a bit contradictory. During an interview with "60 Minutes" last November, Trump said he was "fine" with same-sex marriage as the law of the land.
"These cases have gone to the Supreme Court," he said. "They've been settled. And I'm fine with that. It was settled in the Supreme Court. I mean, it’s done."
But during the Republican presidential primaries, he said the gay marriage issue should have been left to the states and that he would consider appointing judges to overrule the Supreme Court’s marriage decisions.
"I would strongly consider that, yes," he said in a January 2016 Fox News interview.
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