Donald Trump has had an apparent change
of heart about a controversial North Carolina law that targets the
During a campaign stop in Raleigh, the
presumptive Republican nominee was asked to weigh in on the law.
“I'm going with the state,” he
answered. “The state, they know what's going on. They see what's
happening and generally speaking I'm with the state on things like
this. I've spoken with your governor. I've spoken with a lot of
people and I'm going with the state.”
House Bill 2 has been under fire since
it was approved in March during a one-day special session. The law
blocks cities from enacting LGBT protections and prohibits
transgender people from using the bathroom of their choice in
government buildings, including schools.
Passage led to canceled conventions and
concerts and even job losses for the state.
In April, Trump blasted the law during
a television interview.
“North Carolina did something that
was very strong and they’re paying a big price,” he said. “And
there’s a lot of problems. Leave it the way it is. North Carolina,
what they’re going through, with all of the business and all of the
strife – and that’s on both sides – you leave it the way it is.
There have been very few complaints the way it is. People go, they
use the bathroom that they feel is appropriate. There has been so
little trouble. And the problem with what happened in North Carolina
is the strife and the economic punishment they’re taking.”
Trump supports Caitlyn Jenner's right to use the bathroom of her
LGBT rights groups criticized the move.
“Let’s be clear, Donald Trump just
gave one of the nation’s worst laws for LGBTQ people a
full-throated endorsement,” said JoDee Winterhof, senior vice
president for policy and political affairs at the Human Rights
Campaign (HRC). “By buddying up with Governor Pat McCrory on the
deeply discriminatory HB2, Donald Trump is unabashedly embracing a
dangerous law that takes away the civil rights of LGBTQ people and
has cost North Carolina not only its reputation but millions of
dollars in economic losses.”
Chris Sgro, executive director of
Equality NC, said that the comments show that Trump is “no friend
to gay and transgender people.” “We must resoundly reject his
ill-informed discrimination in November,” he added.
The comments come just weeks after
Trump claimed that he was a better friend to the LGBT community than
Hillary Clinton, his presumptive Democratic rival for the White