Little mention of LGBTQ+ issues at third GOP presidential primary debate

The third Republican Party presidential primary debate Nov. 8. (Screenshot via NBC News)

The third Republican presidential primary debate on Nov. 8 in Miami saw little mention of LGBTQ issues, apart from oblique references to education policy matters by former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and U.S. Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.)’s statement that “if God made you a man, you play sports against men.”

During her opening remarks, Haley said “you have parents who are worried about what’s being said, or taught, to their child in the classroom,” and during her closing statement added “let’s make sure that we have transparency in the classroom; as a mom, I know what that means.”

Former President Donald Trump was not present. According to FiveThirtyEight polling averages, as of Nov. 7 he has 56.5 percent support from likely Republican primary voters, trailed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, in a distant second place with 13.9 percent.

Following elections on Nov. 7, where abortion figured prominently in driving turnout among Democratic voters, the issue was raised again.

Scott flagged his “100 percent pro-life voting record” and advocated for a 15-week national ban. DeSantis said pro-lifers tend to lose when the issue is put to a referendum, as was the case in Ohio on Nov. 7. Haley said a federal ban is politically unrealistic, and states should have the freedom to decide, as did former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy bemoaned that in Ohio “the Republicans did not have an alternative amendment or vision on the table” and said, “the missing ingredient in this movement” is “sexual responsibility for men” since “we live in an era of reliable genetic paternity tests … so we can say men deserve more responsibility, so we can tell women we’re all in this together.”

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