Major Political Parties in California and Their Positions on Issues of Concern to the LGBT Community The following is a listing of the major political parties in California and the official platform statement on LGBT lives and relationships and other issues pertinent to the LGBT community and human and civil rights. All information was found on the websites listed and was reproduced verbatim. • A party platform is an official statement of principles that represents the party’s position on a variety of issues. • Voter registration forms contain the option “Decline to State,” which can be used instead of choosing a political party. Choosing Decline to State means that you will not be able to vote for partisan candidates in primary elections; however, you will be able to vote on non-partisan issues in primary elections and for any candidates and issues in the general election. • This information is provided by The Center for educational purposes only. The Center is a non- partisan organization that does not endorse or support any party over another. If one of our voter registration volunteers ever attempts to influence your choice of a political party, please notify the director of public policy, AJ Davis at 619.692.2077 ext 212 or firstname.lastname@example.org. AMERICAN INDEPENDENT PARTY (http://www.aipca.org/Platform/platform.html) This is the California affiliate of the Constitution Party. Listed under Individual Rights: We support the efforts of those who seek enactment of a human life constitutional amendment, which will specifically mandate every branch of government to protect this right for every human being at every stage of his or her development. Listed under Equal Rights: Through the constitutional process, the nation rejected the so-called Equal Rights Amendment. We do not believe that such an amendment should again be submitted for ratification. Rather, we believe that state and Federal laws should be carefully reviewed and revised where necessary to assure equal pay for equal work, and equal treatment of men and women with regard to ownership and control of property, credit, and other economic activities. In addition, we support present laws on the statute books providing special protection for women who are part of the labor force. Listed under Health Care: The spread of AIDS is principally attributable to promiscuous homosexual conduct and drug abuse. Because of the failure of the Federal government to protect the blood supply under its control from corruption, and because of policies which in fact encourage illicit sexual conduct and which otherwise place innocent citizens at risk, millions of non-homosexual, non-drug abusing Americans have been subjected to unnecessary serious risk. Under no circumstances should government at any level continue to subsidize activities which have the effect of encouraging homosexual conduct, or drug abuse We are deeply concerned that, as a consequence of political pressure, a disproportionate amount of public health funds is being committed to AIDS programs rather than to combat other diseases which affect far greater numbers of the American people. While cancer kills 14 times more people than does AIDS, and heart disease kills 22 times more than does AIDS, the Federal government is spending far more on AIDS programs than on cancer programs, and more than twice as much on AIDS programs as on programs to combat heart disease. We call upon the government to alter these expenditure patterns to place the principal emphasis on those health problems which affect the most people. We believe that the AIDS problem is a public health concern, and not a civil rights issue. Listed under Education: We will resist any and all attempts by governmental agencies to use our educational systems to experiment with the lives of our children through such programs as sex-education, sensitivity training, drug and mental experimentation. We oppose the promotion by Planned Parenthood, and other pro- abortion groups of so-called "safe sex" through the public school system, including the distribution of condoms, and condom classes. Sex education is the province of home and church, not the public school system. Nor are the schools an appropriate forum for presentation, or propagandizing, of the homosexual life style. Listed under Protection From Crime and Violence: Use of the term "hate crimes" is a government attempt to deny First Amendment rights to individuals with "politically incorrect" views. We oppose the concept of so-called "hate crimes," recognizing that all crimes of violence are punishable under other statutes. Listed under The Law and Morality: The American Independent Party supports laws providing maximum legal penalties for the criminal distribution, publication, or exhibition of obscenity. We oppose use of public funds to subsidize so-called artists who deliberately promulgate works which are offensive to the moral sensitivities of the majority of the taxpayers, and call for the abolition of the National Endowment for the Arts. We oppose legislation conveying special legal rights, privileges, or government appointments to any special interest segment of society, no matter how vocal. We assert that private organizations, such as Boy Scouts of America, have the right to determine their s own memberships, volunteers, and employees, based on the organization' oaths and creeds. The family, in the traditional sense of husband (man) and wife (woman), is the basic unit of a healthy society. We oppose governmental policies which tend to break up families, including monetary or other inducement to that end, and legislation which attempts to sanction, legitimize, or legalize same sex unions as marriages. DEMOCRATIC PARTY (click on http://www.cadem.org, then “about us” button, then “party platform” button) Listed under Children, Young Adults and Their Families: Maintain the safety net for Children, Young People and Families most in need. Expand non-traditional adoption programs. Listed under Criminal Justice: Stop Hate Crimes. Safeguard the rights of all persons to be protected against any type of hate crime. Vigorously support legislation that adds violence committed against people because of their sexual orientation, gender or disability to the list of Federal hate crimes and expand coverage beyond "federally protected" activities. Ensure protection from the violence and harassment directed at family planning and/or abortion clinics. Support Democratic hate crime initiatives to expand involvement of FBI and other Justice Department personnel to combat hate crimes. Hate crimes must be aggressively prosecuted and criminal penalties need to be increased. Support financial relief for victims of hate crimes. Encourage intensified educational efforts early in school to promote acceptance of diversity. Listed under Education: Student well-being. When students are emotionally and mentally healthy and have reached their highest possible well being, learning is best accomplished. Regardless of gender, national origin, race, religious preference or sexual orientation, each student must have access to adequate health care, including psychological counseling and other social services in order to enhance their learning capabilities. Listed under Equality of Opportunity: The California Democratic Party believes that all persons deserve the opportunity to fully participate in the economic, cultural, political and social facets of society. We take pride in and celebrate our diversity and work to foster the common values, visions and commitments that unite all people regardless of their age, cultural heritage, national origin, disability, socio-economic status, gender, race, sexual orientation or views on religion. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People. Affirm the right of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender people to equal, dignified, respectful treatment and privacy, and the right to freedom from laws that criminalize private sexual conduct between consenting adults. Enact legislation prohibiting education, employment and housing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Ensure the rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people to serve in the armed forces without restriction. Affirm their right to equal legal recognition of their committed relationships, their right to become adoptive parents and their right to protection of their family units, and oppose any federal or state constitutional amendments that would abridge these rights. Listed under Health: AIDS/HIV. Build successful congressional coalitions to provide adequate funding for AIDS/HIV legislation. Continue funding of AIDS/HIV management, prevention, research and treatment programs. Enhance outreach to persons of color and to women. Expand clinical drug trials and access to innovative treatments, such as protease inhibitors. Increase funding for research to effectuate a successful cure. Increase multicultural and multilingual educational programs to combat AIDS/HIV through prevention and treatment. Promote compassionate distribution of all AIDS/HIV medications. Provide confidential reproductive health care services and meaningful sex education in public schools as part of an all-out effort to halt and reverse the alarming increase of AIDS/HIV among teenagers. Clean Needle Exchange. Lift the federal ban on clean needle exchanges. Provide a bridge through clean needle exchange to enhance substance abuse treatments and prevent the spread of HIV. Listed under Women: (new plank for 2004) Economic Security and Autonomy. California Democrats strongly support pay equity and stronger enforcement of the Equal Pay Act and Title VII. Additionally, we support programs and legislation that: • Ensure access to programs that provide and promote equal opportunity, including education, training, promotion, capital, and government contracts and mentoring for public office; • Protect programs essential to health, public safety, equality of opportunity and opportunity that leads to economic equality; • Ensure an economic safety net – social security, unemployment insurance, health benefits, and that all working women earn, at least, a living wage; • Recognize the significant social and economic value of traditional female occupations; • Assist and educate women with dependent children, especially teenage mothers, to improve parenting skills, train for living wage jobs and become self-sufficient; • Ensure accessible, affordable childcare, education and Head Start programs, as well as continuation and expansion of school- lunch and other nutrition programs. Health Services and Reproductive Rights. Institute Universal Health Coverage. Preserve the freedom to choose and vigorously defend a woman’s right to so choose. Ensure confidential, unrestricted access to affordable, quality and culturally appropriate health and reproductive services for women of all ages without guardian, judicial, parental and spousal consent or guardian/ parental notification in all communities. We support contraceptive equity and emergency contraception education legislation; public funding for abortions, contraceptive services’ non- directive counseling with no gag rule on the dissemination of family planning information; including research on trials of non-surgical abortion alternatives such as RU-486; prompt emergency and after-care services for women who are physically and/ or sexually assaulted; insurance coverage for pre-natal and well-baby care; and support removing barriers to breast cancer detection, treatment and services. Civil Rights. Ensure adequate legal enforcement and protection by promoting programs that assist women through the legal system. End discrimination on the basis of race, gender, religion, age, ethnicity, disability and sexual orientation by defending and supporting: CEDAW . (U.N. General Assembly Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women), The Equal Rights Amendment, Affirmative Action, Equal Pay for Equal Work, Title VII and Title IX. GREEN PARTY (http://cagreens.org/platform/soc_jus.htm) Listed under Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression: In keeping with the Green Key Values of Diversity, Social Justice and Equal Opportunity, and Feminism, we support full legal and political equality for all persons, regardless of sex, gender, or sexual orientation. We specifically advocate for the rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, and Queer (LGBTIQ*) people, as follows: • We support the freedom to marry, and all the rights, benefits, and responsibilities thereof, without discrimination based on sex, gender, or sexual orientation. • We support state and federal legislation (including constitutional amendments) to ban discrimination based on sex, gender, and sexual orientation. We oppose measures that restrict rights or create unequal treatment based on sex, gender, or sexual orientation. • We support the right of children to be cared for in loving homes, regardless of the sex, gender, sexual orientation, or marital status of the parents. We support the right of all persons to consideration for adoption and foster parenthood without regard to sex, gender, or sexual orientation. • We support the right of LGBTIQ persons to receive education and care, without discrimination, harassment, or violence based on sex, gender, or sexual orientation. • We support the right of all persons to self-determination with regard to gender identity and sex. We therefore support the right of intersex and transgender individuals to be free of coercion and involuntary assignment of gender or sex. We oppose involuntary medical or surgical treatment-- including the involuntary treatment of children-- to assign gender identity or sex. We support access to medical and surgical treatment for assignment or reassignment of gender or sex, based on informed consent. • We oppose all forms of anti-LGBTIQ violence, and support legislation against all forms of hate crimes, including those directed against LGBTIQ people. • We support the rights of artists and performers to free expression. We welcome art and performance that provokes thought and discussion of sex, gender, and sexual orientation. Listed under AIDS/HIV: All people, including those with AIDS / HIV, have a right to adequate medical care and also protection from discrimination. We call for humane and adequate handling of ALL people with AIDS/HIV. ALL people in ALL countries, including those with AIDS/HIV, have a right to adequate medical care, protection from discrimination, and confidentiality. Government has a responsibility to protect and advance the health of the public. The AIDS epidemic has been inadequately addressed at the local, state, federal, and international levels. Inadequate research for a cure, education, and medical treatment have occurred. While condom use is often effective as a preventive measure, it is not infallible and constitutes “safer sex” rather than “safe sex”. More research is required to improve condom protectiveness, and in characterizing the risks of oral and other modes of sex. The Green Party of California calls for: Increased funding for AIDS education and patient care Increased funding for comprehensive sex education that includes AIDS education Increased funding for research focusing on a cure, methods of prevention, and on bolstering immune systems. Improved technology, facilities, laboratories, researchers, staff and personnel to cure AIDS/HIV. A Manhattan Project for a Cure is required. COMPLETE sharing of information between researchers, funding agencies (including corporations), and the public on AIDS/HIV before award of the next research grant More research into better methods of prevention of HIV infection. While we support condom use, better condoms are also required. We support more vaccine research. Equal access to AIDS education, treatment and medications for ALL affected. Accordingly, funding and accountability should be increased. Allowing ALL prisoners affected with AIDS/HIV in ALL countries to have the same access to education, treatment, preventive measures (including condom use), and medical care as the civilians of each country of incarceration A uniform international definition of AIDS Protecting the confidentiality of ALL people diagnosed with AIDS/HIV or tested for HIV More careful and timely approval of effective AIDS drugs by the FDA Production of affordable and available versions of patented medicines in ALL countries Targeting the young for age-appropriate education about AIDS/HIV and appropriate methods of prevention. We support the distribution of condoms in schools, and sex education. Providing housing for homeless and poor people with AIDS/HIV Support for needle exchange programs and for programs to help drug addicts No mandatory screening for AIDS/HIV; anonymous screening must be available Lifting the ban prohibiting HIV positive people from entering the U.S. as visitors or as immigrants Single-payer health insurance in the United States Support for medical marijuana as stated by the California Compassionate Use Act of 1996 (formerly Proposition 215), that is, relieve the pain of AIDS/HIV sufferers with marijuana on the recommendation of a physician. LIBERTARIAN PARTY (http://www.lp.org/issues/platform/platform_all.html) Listed under Sexual Rights: The Issue: Government has presumed to decide acceptability over sexual practices in personal relationships, imposing a particular code of moral and social values and displacing personal choice in such matters. Adults have the right to private choice in consensual sexual activity. We advocate an end to all government attempts to dictate, prohibit, control or encourage any private lifestyle, living arrangement or contractual relationship. We would repeal existing laws and policies intended to condemn, affirm, encourage or deny sexual lifestyles, or any set of attitudes about such lifestyles. Listed under Crime: We call for an end to "hate crime" laws that punish people for their thoughts and speech, distract us from real crimes, and foster resentment by giving some individuals special status under the law. Listed under Victimless Crimes: We advocate: …the repeal of all laws regarding consensual sexual relations, including prostitution and solicitation, and the cessation of state oppression and harassment of homosexual men and women, that they, at last, be accorded their full rights as individuals. Listed under Conscription and the Military: We call for the end of the Defense Department practice of discharging armed forces personnel for homosexual conduct. We further call for retraction of all less-than-honorable discharges previously assigned for such reasons and deletion of such information from military personnel files. We recommend the repeal of the Uniform Code of Military Justice and the recognition and equal protection of the rights of armed forces members. This will thereby promote morale, dignity, and a sense of justice within the military. Listed under Freedom of Association and Government Discrimination: s Individual rights should not be denied, abridged or enhanced at the expense of other people' rights by laws at any level of government based on sex, wealth, race, color, creed, age, national origin, personal habits, political preference or sexual orientation…While we do not advocate private discrimination, we do not support any laws which attempt to limit or ban it. NATURAL PARTY (http://www.natural-law.org/platform/index.html) No information was found in the published party platform that addressed LGBT lives and relationships, HIV/AIDS or discrimination based on sexual orientation. PEACE AND FREEDOM PARTY (http://www.peaceandfreedom.org/Platform.htm) Listed under Sexual Orientation: Equal treatment and benefits under the law for all families. Guarantee equal child custody, adoption, visitation privileges, and foster parenthood rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Equal treatment for all people in the military regardless of sexual orientation. The right to gay marriage and partners'benefits. Accurate sex education courses in public schools. Truthful information about sexuality in society and history. Listed under Health Care: We believe that access to quality medical and dental care is a basic human right. We stand for a democratically-controlled, publicly-funded health care system. We support health practices that emphasize education, prevention and nutrition. We demand: More substance abuse treatment and needle-exchange programs Special attention to preventing epidemics of communicable diseases, such as AIDS. REFORM PARTY (http://reformpartyofcalifornia.org/issues/webpage_soc.html) Listed under Issues: Social issues. The Reform Party is primarily interested in Government Reform and Fiscal Responsibility and will not become officially involved in issues of Religion, Sexual Orientation, definitions of marriage, Abortion (Pro-Life/Pro-Choice) or related issues. The national party platform (http://reformparty.org/cgi-bin/platform.cgi) offers no information that addressed LGBT lives and relationships, HIV/AIDS or discrimination based on sexual orientation. REPUBLICAN PARTY (http://www.cagop.org/about/platform.cfm) Listed under Equal Opportunity: We support laws that prohibit employment and housing discrimination on the basis of the immutable characteristics of race, ethnicity, nationality and sex, or on the basis of religion as protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. We oppose any special privileges, rights, or accommodations based on sexual or behavioral preferences. Listed under Family: Recognizing the traditional model of monogamous heterosexual marriage as the only stable relationship upon which to build a society, we believe that homosexuality should not be presented as an acceptable "alternative" lifestyle in public education and policy. We oppose granting to homosexuals special privileges, including marriage, domestic partnership benefits, and child custody or adoption. National Republican Platform (http://www.issues2000.org/2004_GOP_Platform.htm) Listed under On Abortion: Abstinence from sexual activity is the only protection that is 100 percent effective against out-of-wedlock pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, including sexually transmitted HIV/AIDS. Therefore, we support doubling abstinence education funding. We oppose school-based clinics that provide referrals, counseling, and related services for contraception and abortion. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and we endorse legislation to make it clear that s the 14th Amendment' protections apply to unborn children. Listed under On Civil Rights: After more than two centuries of American jurisprudence, and millennia of human experience, a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization, the union of a man and a woman in marriage. Attempts to redefine marriage in a single state or city could have serious consequences throughout the country, and anything less than a Constitutional amendment, passed by the Congress and ratified by the states, is vulnerable to being overturned by activist judges. We strongly support a Constitutional amendment that fully protects marriage, and we [oppose] forcing states to recognize other living arrangements as equivalent to marriage. The well-being of children is best accomplished [when] nurtured by their mother & father anchored by the bonds of marriage. We believe that legal recognition and the accompanying benefits afforded couples should be preserved for that unique and special union of one man and one woman which has historically been called marriage. Listed under On Families: We believe that every child deserves the chance to be born and grow up in a loving family. We also believe that while families exist in many different forms, there are ideals to strive for. Evidence shows us that children have the best chance at success when raised by a mother and a father who love and respect each other as well as their children.