When people tell you who they are, believe them the first time. Sen. Rand Paul has told us for years that he is an asshole. Believe him, he is.
Sen. Rand Paul decided to wage his own culture war battle during a confirmation hearing rather than focus on, oh, let’s say, the candidate’s qualifications during a global pandemic that has killed 500K Americans:
If you did not know this already, Dr. Levine is transgendered. If she is approved for this position (Asst. Secretary for Health at the Department of Health and Human Services), she would be the first openly transperson confirmed for any role by the Senate.
Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA and the chairwoman of the Senate Health Committee, which considered Levine’s nomination) name checks Sen. AquaBuddha:
“It is really critical to me that our nominees be treated with respect and that our questions focus on their qualifications and the work ahead of us, rather than ideological and harmful misrepresentations like those we heard from Senator Paul earlier.”
“Bless his heart,” she did not add, but should have. That’s highly unusual and not part of the usual decorum on which the Senate prides itself.
The Hill tells us that former self-certified opthamologist Rand Paul’s research (such as it is) overlooked Dr. Levine’s public record on the topic:
The World Professional Association for Transgender Health says genital surgery should not be carried out until patients reach adulthood. In 2015, Levine said during a public event that surgical treatment is not recommended before age 18. In 2017, she said there are “some procedures” that might be done before 18.
We give last word to Rubin Gonzales, executive director of the LGBTQ Victory Institute, which works to elevate LGBTQ people in politics and government:
“His remarks echo the talking points of the same organizations who said gay men deserved AIDS and that LGBTQ people should be criminalized, he explicitly attacked vulnerable trans youth for his own perceived political gain and it was a disgrace.”