U.S.A. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has passed away at age 90, according to ‘LGBTQ Nation’. Her long career in politics showed her allyship to LGBTQ+ people, even at a time when such support was more politically dangerous.
The senator has held her seat since 1992. Before then, she famously served as president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors during the 1978 assassinations of gay board member and civil rights activist Harvey Milk and then-Mayor George Moscone. She became Moscone’s successor as mayor and, in 1990, ran an unsuccessful campaign to become California’s governor before being elected to the U.S.A. Senate two years later.
Feinstein’s record on LGBTQ+ rights was at times mixed. As mayor, she vetoed city employee benefits for domestic partners.
In 2004, she criticised then-mayor and now Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) for doing “too much, too fast, too soon” by ordering city officials to issue same-sex marriage licenses. However, in 1996, she was one of the few Democrats to vote against the homophobic Defense of Marriage Act. In 2017, she criticised then-President Donald Trump’s ban on transgender military servicemembers.
HRC gave her voting record a perfect score of 100 for the past several sessions of Congress, showing her solid support for LGBTQ+ rights legislation.
Feinstein was hospitalised with shingles earlier this year. Her advanced age and failing health became the topics of scrutiny. She said that she would not seek reelection next year but that she would serve the rest of her term.
In a statement following her announcement not to seek re election, Equality California, the nation’s largest statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organisation, wrote of Feinstein, “She has supported landmark federal hate crime legislation, fought for access to life-saving treatment for people living with HIV, sponsored the Equality Act, spoken out in support of LGBTQ+ service members before and after ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ and has stood up for our community — even before it was popular to do so and when it presented significant political risks.”
Gov. Newsom, a Democrat, will appoint someone to temporarily replace Feinstein.
Read related myGwork articles here: