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D.C. LGBTQ Pride parade draws thousands in spite of brief protester blockade

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Thousands of revelers, some waving rainbow flags symbolizing gay rights, crowded Washington streets on Saturday for the city’s gay pride parade in an annual party that saw anti-corporate protesters briefly block its route.

Cheering spectators packed sidewalks as floats with rainbow balloons and papier mache rainbows snaked 1.5 miles (2.4 km) through residential neighborhoods several blocks north of the White House. In almost 90 Fahrenheit (32 Celsius) heat, some men went shirtless or donned feather boas.

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Protesters who oppose the Capital Pride parade’s corporate backing, which includes bank Wells Fargo & Co and weapons maker Northrop Grumman Corp , briefly blocked the parade route and forced it to be rerouted.

The protest group, No Justice No Pride, said in a statement that Capital Pride also needed to add a transgender minority woman to its board and bar police from marching in the parade.

The Capital Pride parade was among a bevy of gay pride events this weekend scheduled for cities across the United States, including Boston, Detroit, Milwaukee, and Kalamazoo, Michigan.

“We need to be out here to tell people that God loves them for who they are and who they love,” said the Rev. Alex Dyer, 38, an Episcopal priest from Washington who marched in the parade with his husband and 2-year-old daughter.

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The parade in the heavily Democratic U.S. capital featured T-shirts that said “Love Trumps Hate,” an apparent reference to President Donald Trump. The Republican has voiced support for gay rights but his administration has revoked federal guidelines that let transgender students use bathrooms of their choice.

Damian Jessup, 30, who traveled from Norfolk, Virginia, to march with gay Republicans, defended Trump and his support for gays.

“I lost a lot of friends when I came out as Republican,” said Jessup, who was wearing a Trump T-shirt. “It’s harder to come out as Republican than to come out as gay.”

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The Washington parade came a day ahead of a so-called Resist March in Los Angeles against Trump, which is taking the place of the annual pride parade.

In San Francisco, the SF Weekly newspaper reported the parade in that city would include a “resistance contingent” and an immigrant rights speaker.

Early on Monday, the owner of the shuttered Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, is set to open its doors in remembrance of victims of a mass shooting there on June 12, 2016, that killed 49 people.

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(Additional reporting by Ian Simpson; Writing by Ian Simpson; Editing by Mary Milliken)


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Here’s how the law governing whistleblowers applies to the Trump Ukraine complaint

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This week it was revealed that President Donald Trump did something so concerning that an intelligence staffer felt the need to report the incident and file for whistleblower protections.

Trump asked Ukraine to look into scandals about former Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter. For nearly a year, Trump's former attorney Rudy Giuliani was admittedly working to persuade officials in Ukraine to find "dirt" on the Bidens that they could use in the election. While the accusations against the younger Biden have been disproven, it's suspected, but not confirmed, that this was the incident detailed in the complaint.

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Retiring Republican lawmaker blames Trump’s ‘petty, childish bullsh*t’ for massive GOP exodus

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In an examination of the record-breaking number of Republican lawmakers who have decided to quit or retire despite holding a seat in solidly conservative congressional districts, one lawmaker admitted that he grew weary of having to deal with Donald Trump's daily Twitter habit and other shenanigans -- so he is calling it quits.

As the Washington Post reports, "Since Trump’s inauguration, a Washington Post analysis shows that nearly 40 percent of the 241 Republicans who were in office in January 2017 are gone or leaving because of election losses, retirements including former House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (Wis)."

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Internet rains hell on ‘fake Christian’ Karen Pence’s new Twitter account: ‘I can’t wait for the rapture’

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The Internet reacted with scorn over the weekend after Second Lady Karen Pence announced a new Twitter account aimed at reelecting President Donald Trump.

In her first tweet, Pence posted a video lavishing praise on the president.

"There are probably a lot of things you don't know about me," Pence says in the video. "For example, I enjoy painting, I love to ride my bike and I like nothing better than reading a good book. On my new Twitter account, I will share what I'm up to when I'm not in the office at the White House."

Excited to start a new #Twitter account to help tell the story of all the accomplishments under the leadership of @realDonaldTrump and @mike_pence! Follow along to KEEP AMERICA GREAT! 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/RaPwC5ThyR

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