Congressional Equality Caucus
ChairMark Pocan
Founded2008
IdeologyLGBTQ rights
Seats in the House
195 / 435
Seats in the House Democratic Caucus
195 / 212
Seats in the House Republican Caucus
0 / 222
Seats in the United States Senate
0 / 100
Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus Members at the Kick-off Press Conference from left to right: Niki Tsongas (D–MA), José E. Serrano (D–NY), Xavier Becerra (D–CA), Hilda Solis (D–CA), Jerry Nadler (D–NY), Barbara Lee (D–CA), Tammy Baldwin (D–WI), Lois Capps (D–CA), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R–FL), Linda Sánchez (D–CA), Mike Honda (D–CA), Jim McGovern (D–MA), Barney Frank (D–MA), Chris Shays (R–CT)

The Congressional Equality Caucus, formerly the Congressional LGBTQ+ Caucus, was formed by openly gay representatives Tammy Baldwin and Barney Frank June 4, 2008, to advance LGBT+ rights.[1][2] The caucus is chaired by the most senior member and is co-chaired by nine of the United States House of Representatives' ten current openly LGBT members; during the 118th Congress, the caucus is chaired by Representative Mark Pocan and is co-chaired by Representatives Becca Balint, Angie Craig, Sharice Davids, Robert Garcia, Chris Pappas, Mark Pocan, Eric Sorensen, Mark Takano, and Ritchie Torres.[3]

With 195 members, the Congressional Equality Caucus became the largest caucus during the 118th United States Congress session.

Mission

The mission of the caucus is to work for LGBTQ rights, the repeal of laws discriminatory against LGBTQ persons, the elimination of hate-motivated violence, and improved health and well-being for all persons, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.[4] The caucus serves as a resource for Members of Congress, their staffs, and the public on LGBTQ issues.[4] Unlike the Congressional Black Caucus, famous for admitting only black members, the LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus admits any member who is willing to advance LGBTQ rights, regardless of their sexual identity or orientation; it has historically been co-chaired by every openly-LGBTQ member of the House.

Equality PAC

In February 2016, the caucus formed the Equality PAC to support candidates running for federal office who are LGBTQ or seek to advance LGBTQ rights. On March 14, 2016, the board of the Equality PAC voted to endorse Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Presidential election.[5]

Task forces

During the 114th United States Congress, the caucus formed the Transgender Equality Task Force (TETF) and the LGBTQ+ Aging Issues Task Force. The TETF is currently chaired by Pramila Jayapal and Sara Jacobs and is committed to pushing for legislative and administrative action to ensure that transgender people are treated equally and with dignity and respect. The LGBTQ+ Aging Issues Task Force is currently chaired by Suzanne Bonamici and works to push for legislative and administrative action to protect the dignity and security of elderly LGBTQ people.[6]

Membership

Congressional Equality Caucus in the 118th United States Congress
  Democratic members (195)
  Democratic non-members (17)

The below table summarizes the number of caucus members by party over a number of legislative sessions; the drop in membership numbers in the 114th congress was predominantly due to this being the first year that caucus members were charged fees for their membership ($400 per member, $2,100 per vice chair, $7,500 per co-chair):[7]

Congress Democratic Republican Total
111th 90 1 91[8]
112th 101 3 104[9]
113th 112 2 114[10]
114th 55 0 55[11]
115th 113 2 115[12]
116th 164 1 165[13]
117th 175 0 175[14]
118th 195 0 195[15]

List of Caucus members in the 118th Congress:

Co-chairs[edit]

Vice chairs[edit]

Members[edit]

Former co-chairs

Former members

See also

References

  1. ^ "House Members Form LGBT Equality Caucus: Goal is Equality for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) Americans" (Press release). LGBT Equality Caucus. June 4, 2008. Archived from the original on December 11, 2012. Retrieved January 5, 2013.
  2. ^ "U.S. House Members Form First Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus", The Advocate, February 5, 2008, retrieved April 7, 2010
  3. ^ "Hoyer Congratulates Leaders of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus for the 117th Congress". December 18, 2020. Archived from the original on May 24, 2022. Retrieved January 25, 2021.
  4. ^ a b "Mission". LGBT Equality Caucus. June 12, 2014. Retrieved February 21, 2019.
  5. ^ Equality PAC latest to endorse Clinton
  6. ^ "Task Forces". LGBT Equality Caucus. March 25, 2019. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  7. ^ "Membership in LGBT caucus may decline in 114th Congress". February 4, 2015.
  8. ^ "LGBT Equality Caucus Membership List". Archived from the original on February 3, 2011. Retrieved January 19, 2011.
  9. ^ "LGBT Equality Caucus Membership List". Archived from the original on December 11, 2012. Retrieved January 5, 2013.
  10. ^ "Previous Membership". LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus. January 5, 2015. Retrieved February 6, 2022.
  11. ^ "House Equality Caucus Announces Membership for the 114th Congress". Congressional Equality Caucus. February 23, 2015. Archived from the original on August 5, 2020. Retrieved June 4, 2023.
  12. ^ "House LGBT Caucus Announces Bipartisan, 102 Person Membership in the 115th Congress | LGBT Equality Caucus". Archived from the original on December 1, 2017. Retrieved November 20, 2017.
  13. ^ "House LGBT Caucus Announces Largest Membership in Caucus History with 165 Members in the 116th Congress". March 11, 2019. Retrieved June 8, 2019.
  14. ^ "Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus Members". February 8, 2022. Retrieved February 8, 2022.
  15. ^ "Congressional Equality Members". February 22, 2023.