enda

The Trans Man Who’s Making Trans Men Less Scary on Capitol Hill

20090828__b6gayrights08281_gallery1

You’ll want to remember Diego Sanchez’s name, because he’s the transgender fella who’s going to get a back slap from Rep. Barney Frank when Congress finally passes a trans-inclusive ENDA. It helps that Sanchez is one of Frank’s senior policy advisers and has been squirreling away at the anti-discrimination bill.

Reportedly the first openly transgender congressional staffer, Sanchez has been integral in putting a face on trans Americans for other legislators. He’s the one putting in time with the offices of Frank’s fellow lawmakers, which the Massachusetts congressman believes will be key to killing opposition to ENDA solely for including the the Ts.

Sanchez’s strategy, besides standard intra-office lobbying (back scratching! favor trading!), is just like marriage equality advocates: Put in the face time to show your opponents that you’re just like them, and it’s harder for them to treat you as sub-human.

You see, sometimes having LGBTs as top aides makes you a gay-friendlier politician. And sometimes not.