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Republicans are waffling on LGBTQ+ issues. Will it matter?


The 19th This story was published in partnership with The 19th , a nonprofit, nonpartisan newsroom reporting on gender, politics and policy.

Nancy Hainline is a woman without a party. She grew up Republican, just like her dad, who owned his own business in Arkansas. When she moved to Missouri to work as a lab technician at the Smith Glynn Callaway clinic in Springfield, she still thought of the Republican party as the party for small business owners. She still holds many conservative views.

“I don’t know that Trump has done a terrible job,” she said. “He’s done some things that have needed to be done.”

But now, the 2020 election presents Hainline with a painful choice.

“Because of his attitude toward the LGBT community, I actually am being pushed into the democratic lane,” Hainline, who voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, said. She doesn’t know that she will vote for Joe Biden this year. “This has been a very hard election coming up.”

Hainline’s adult child, Damon Hainline, is gay and gender nonbinary. Damon has fought from coast-to-coast securing rights for LGBTQ+ people as a field organizer. It’s something that Hainline, who says she had previously been “strongly anti-gay,” thinks God put […]

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