Harris joined the Capital Pride event in Washington D.C. on June 12 alongside her husband, Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff. Harris and Emhoff walked hand-in-hand, the Vice President wearing a “love is love” t-shirt and the Second Gentleman donning a rainbow-text “love first” graphic tee.
NBC Washington reports that the pair walked with Pride-goers at Freedom Plaza, telling them, “Happy Pride.”
The Vice President also spoke in favor of the Equality Act during a brief statement at the event and promised that the Biden administration is committed to advancing LGBTQ+ rights. “We need to make sure that our transgender community and our youth are all protected. We need, still, protections around employment and housing,” Harris said, according to NBC Washington. “There is so much more work to do, and I know we are committed.”
Kamala Harris later took to Twitter to pay tribute to the victims of the Pulse Nightclub shooting on June 12, 2016. “Five years ago, 49 LGBTQ+ people and allies were enjoying an evening out at Pulse Nightclub. And then, in an instant, they were gone. Today, we remember those who died and their loved ones-and we recommit to building a world free from gun violence.”
On June 12, President Joe Biden commemorated the tragedy by declaring the nightclub a national memorial.
“In the coming days, I will sign a bill designating Pulse Nightclub as a national memorial, enshrining in law what has been true since that terrible day five years ago: Pulse Nightclub is hallowed ground,” he wrote in a statement, which also emphasized the need for stricter gun control laws. “In the memory of all of those lost at the Pulse nightclub five years ago, let us continue the work to be a nation at our best-one that recognizes and protects the dignity and safety of every American.”