Richard Grenell, first openly gay cabinet member, says Trump rejects ‘identity politics’

Former acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell says President Trump’s decision to include him in his cabinet had nothing to do with his sexuality or “identity politics.”

Speaking to Breitbart News on Saturday, Grenell, the first openly gay US cabinet member, said Trump “doesn’t care about these types of issues” when considering whom to appoint for a position.

Grenell, who served as US ambassador to Germany and recently joined the Republican National Committee to handle LGBT outreach, said the commander-in-chief focuses on who is best qualified for the job.

“President Trump, I know him well, he doesn’t care about these types of issues. They’re irrelevant characterizations about someone. What is relevant is whether or not they can do the job,” he told the outlet.

The Trump ally went on to tell a story about a recent exchange he had about his LGBT colleagues in the Trump administration.

“You know, somebody recently asked me how many gays and lesbians work in the Trump administration. I had to answer, ‘I have no idea. I really don’t know.’ This person said to me, ‘Well, there you go — that’s the reason — because we had 2,410 in the Obama administration, the Obama-Biden administration.’ I said, ‘I’d be pretty offended that I was on a list that says, ‘Here’s our gay and lesbian list,’” Grenell said.

“Thank God we don’t keep a list. Thank God we don’t hire people because they come out of a box and say, ‘Here is a black, here is a Hispanic, here is a gay person,’” he continued.

Since joining the RNC, Grenell has begun campaigning for the commander-in-chief ahead of the November election.

On Wednesday, the Log Cabin Republicans, an organization dedicated to LGBT conservatives, unveiled a campaign ad featuring Grenell in which he called Trump “the strongest ally that gay Americans have ever had in the White House.”

“The fact that I’m gay didn’t even faze Donald Trump,” he added in the campaign spot.

Grenell also highlighted Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s record, slamming his past support for “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the Clinton-era policy that allowed LGBT service members to serve in the military but forced them to be closeted, and the Defense of Marriage Act, which denied same-sex marriage rights.

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