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Joseph Robinette Biden is an American politician who served as the 47th vice president of the United States from 2009 to 2017. He represented Delaware in the U.S. Senate from 1973 to 2009. A member of the Democratic Party, Biden is the presumptive Democratic nominee for the 2020 United States presidential election, running against incumbent Donald Trump. Biden unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination in 1988 and 2008.
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HISTORIC: Biden pardons discharged LGBTQ veterans

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www.washingtonblade.com

President Joe Biden on Wednesday issued historic pardons for military service members who were discharged over their sexual orientation or gender identity under discriminatory policies of the past, like “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” “Our Nation’s service members stand on the frontlines of freedom, and risk their lives in order to defend our country,” he said in a statement. “Despite their courage and great sacrifice, thousands of LGBTQI+ service members were forced out of the military because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.” “Some of these patriotic Americans were subject to court-martial, and have carried the burden of this great injustice for decades,” the president said. “As Commander in Chief, I am committed to maintaining the finest fighting force in the world.

That means making sure that every member of our military is safe and respected – so they can focus on their mission,” he said. “This is about dignity, decency, and ensuring the culture of our Armed Forces reflect the values that make us an exceptional nation,” Biden said. “We have a sacred obligation to all of our service members – including our brave LGBTQI+ service members: to properly prepare and equip them when they are sent into harm’s way, and to care for them and their families when they return home.” “Today we are making progress in that pursuit.” The president also issued a Proclamation on Granting Pardon for Certain Violations of Article 125 Under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which specifies that “The Military Departments (Army, Navy, or Air Force), or in the case of the Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, in conjunction with the Department of Justice, shall provide information about and publicize application procedures for certificates of pardon.” Veterans who were discharged for their sexual orientation or gender identity are barred from accessing benefits through the U.S.

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