For Immediate Release: October 31, 2015
Contact: Dave Jacobson, (818) 943-2348, Shallman Communications
OC-BASED EQUALITY CALIFORNIA REP. LAUDS CORREA’S RECORD ON LGBT RIGHTS
Gregory H. Willenborg, 10-year Long Orange County Representative for Equality California*, Endorses Lou Correa for Congress (CA-46)
SANTA ANA, CA— Capping off a banner week for his campaign to represent California’s 46th Congressional District, today former State Senator Lou Correa was endorsed by Gregory Willenborg, a 10-year long Orange County-based representative for Equality California (EQCA)*, the state’s premier LGBT rights organization.
In a letter sent to Correa’s campaign for Congress, Orange County-based EQCA* representative Gregory Willenborg praised the former Senator’s long alliance with the LGBT community and his record of moving forward equality issues. Excerpts from the letter are included below:
“It was a pleasure to speak to you on the historic day when the Supreme Court gave all Americans full and equal right on marriage. On June 26th, when I called you to thank you for all you did over 16 years to make this day possible, I was in New York City standing in Front of the Stonewall Bar. I wanted to be in NYC when the Supreme Court decided this milestone. At that bar on June 28, 1969, almost 46 years to the day, courageous gay men and women decided enough-is-enough and fought back when police raided, yet again, this bar to arrest and harass LGBT people just for being gay. That day ordinary people decided it had to stop and a movement was founded… From that day LGBT citizens and many of our strongest straight allies, including you, have moved our country and its attitude to bring a day of full equality…
“…you continued to campaign, and you continued to visit all of our homes and hear our needs. At the time two of your neighbors, Pat Callahan and myself became the Orange County representatives for Equality California-what would become the largest LBGT civil rights organization in California and the U.S… When you were elected we finally had a friendly ear in Sacramento… We were able to pass health insurance, property tax rights for LGBT, hate crimes, estate law and over 50 different bills that changed the lives and landscape of LGBT Californians…
“… we had an opportunity to get our first bill ever for Civil Unions. While it did not have the force of the next laws in future years, it was a milestone for our community and started our journey for marriage equality… If this bill had failed it would have embolden our opponents and set our movement back years…[but] YOU BECAME THE 41st VOTE in a 80 member Assembly that provided the critical vote that made this law. ALL of our community, leaders and history felt the irony that an Orange County Assemblyman was the one to do this. YOU WERE THE DECIDING VOTE that first gave us Civil Unions… I will never forget that, or you, for helping my people take a step forward to full equality…
“Lou, we worked together with Equality California for 10 years. As our Assemblyman and later our Senator you made us proud of our District and our state. While there were times we disagreed and locked heads, you were always a man of your word. I remember at the first LGBT coffee meeting in our home, you stated that you would be for Civil Union but that your religious convictions made you believe you could not be for gay marriage… We appreciated your honesty, and quite frankly we did not then, see marriage happening in my lifetime. But over the years YOU evolved as did our country. You opposed Proposition 8 and fought it with passion. You were for LGBT marriage on Senator Mark Leno’s famous bill and all bills in the future. You grew, I grew, and the United States grew.
“Lou, I do not doubt that we would have gotten marriage equality from the court one day, but we would not have gotten it on June 28, 2015 had it not been for your historic vote many years ago, and your continued support over the years. We will never forget that along with our LGBT elected officials it was our progressive, forward thinking straight representatives who got us over the line of victory on marriage and so many issues. Your leadership and that of the woman you hope to follow into her office-Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez- made the difference… We still have along way to go on LGBT, women’s, immigration, voting, health care, and human rights issues but with you and Linda [Sanchez] in Congress and Loretta [Sanchez] in the United States Senate, we will have equality and justice for all.
“Thank you Lou for being a leader and for making history for us.”
In addition to today’s endorsement, former Senator Lou Correa has been endorsed by two of California’s top leaders in the LGBT movement— Senator Mark Leno and Senator Ricardo Lara.
Today’s announcement follows news earlier this week that International Union of Painters & Allied Trades District Council 36, State Senate Labor Committee Chairman Tony Mendoza, former San Diego Central Labor Council leader and Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez also endorsed Correa’s campaign for Congress, as did Congressman Raul Ruiz, MD.
Illustrating his wide-ranging and dynamic list of endorsements, former Senator Correa has raked-in support from the following leaders and organizations:
California Small Business Association
Building Our Leadership Diversity (BOLD) PAC
International Union of Painters & Allied Trades District Council 36
Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chair and Congresswoman Linda Sánchez
Congresswoman & former State Assembly Speaker Karen Bass
Congressman Juan Vargas
Congressman Alan Lowenthal
Congressman Pete Aguilar
Congressman Ted Lieu
Congressman Tony Cardenas
Congresswoman Norma Torres
Congressman Raul Ruiz, MD.
California’s State Treasurer John Chiang
California’s Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson
California State Senate President Pro-Tem Kevin de León
California Board of Equalization Chair Jerome Horton
California Latino Legislative Caucus Chair and State Assemblyman Luis Alejo
California State Senator and former Air Force General Richard Roth
California State Senator & LGBT trailblazer Mark Leno
California State Senator & Labor Committee Chair Tony Mendoza
California State Assemblywoman & former San Diego Central Labor Council Leader Lorena Gonzalez
Santa Ana City Council Member Michele Martinez
Santa Ana Unified School District Board President John Palacio
Santa Ana Unified School District Clerk Valerie Amezcua
Santa Ana Unified School District Board Member José Alfredo Hernández, J.D.
Anaheim Union High School District Board President Annemarie Randle-Trejo
Anaheim Union High School District Board Member Al Jabbar
Anaheim City School District Board of Education President Bob Gardner
Anaheim City School District Board of Education Member Ryan Ruelas
Anaheim Police Chief John Welter (Ret.)*
City of Garden Grove City Council Member Kris Beard
Huntington Beach Unified School District Board Member Bonnie Castrey
Los Angeles City Councilman, past State Senator Gil Cedillo
South County Labor Chair Ray Cordova*
Correa served in the California State Senate, representing the 34th District, from 2006- 2014 and served the cities of Anaheim, Buena Park, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Santa Ana, Stanton and Westminster. Prior to the Senate, he served on the Orange County Board of Supervisors representing the 1st District. Before his time on the Board, Correa served in the California State Assembly representing the 69th District.
For more information, please visit www.LouCorrea.com.
*Titles for Identification Purposes Only.