Wisconsin organizers encouraged activists supporting Joe Biden to get involved in their communities and run for office.
U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, who has been mentioned as a possible Biden running mate, headlined and opened the call, which featured panelists Nellie Sires, the executive director of the Wisconsin Democratic Party, LGBTQ+ health advocate Elle Halo, and Reggie Greer, Biden’s LGBTQ+ Vote Director. DNC Secretary Jason Rae moderated the panel.
The panelist stressed the importance of voter turnout, especially in swing-state Wisconsin.
“The road to the White House runs right through Wisconsin,” said Rae, who leads the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce. “And turning out the LGBTQ community here is vital to ensure that we elect someone who will be a champion for our community.”
Greer looked ahead to Inauguration Day, noting that a President Biden would have the chance to make 4,100 appointments in the federal government. Under the Obama-Biden administration, he said, LGBTQ people had composed a historic number of those positions.
“We need a government that sees us and reflects us in law and in policy,” Greer said before touting Biden’s proposals around banning conversion therapy and passing the Equality Act.
Sires told one attendee that political representation from LGBTQ+ Wisconsinites was crucial to enacting LGBTQ+ friendly policy and encouraged him to get involved as a local politician.
“Do it. Run, please. Go. be bold. Step up, represent your community,” she said. “Hold other folks accountable if they’re not representing you well. And there are offices up and down those tickets that have big impacts on people’s lives.”
Halo also emphasized the importance of getting into the political or organizational battles that affect everyday life for Black and LGBTQ+ Americans.
“Politicians don’t solve our problems; we solve our problems,” she said.
Halo encouraged listeners to safely get involved in the wave of protests and to support activists who have been pushing for racial justice in policing, healthcare, and other areas for years.
“Go put your mask on and go outside,” she said. “Invest yourself in the incredible Black Lives Matter movement and the social justice movement that is currently happening in Milwaukee and Wisconsin.”