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Did Danica Get Duggar'd? Robocall Campaign Launched Against Transgender Candidate

Thursday Oct 12, 2017
Danica Roem
Danica Roem  (Source:Steve Helber / AP)

Nobody could ever accuse supporters of anti-LGBTQ GOP politician Bob Marshall of ever being original.

In 2014, former reality TV star Michelle Duggar of "19 Kids and Counting" famously lent her voice to a robocall campaign aimed to stir up fear in voters in advance of an anti-discrimination ordinance that was going before the Fayetteville, Arkansas City Council. In the call, Duggar vilified transgender citizens who would be protected by the law as "males with past child predator convictions that claim they are female to have a legal right to enter private areas that are reserved for women and girls."

In a replay of that scene, the Washington Post is reporting this week that conservative groups in Northern Virginia are taking a page out of the Duggar playbook by launching a fear-mongering robocall campaign as an attempt to take down Danica Roem, the state's first openly transgender candidate for elected office.

"Danica Roem supports policy that requires schools to allow boys to play on girls' sports teams and compete in girls' leagues," said a recorded voice in a telephone poll according to the WaPo. "Does this make you more or less likely to support Danica?"

Roem, who is the 13th District's Democratic candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates, is running against 11-term incumbent candidate Bob Marshall, a far right wing anti-LGBTQ Republican who has used his tenure in office to introduce a number of failed bills aimed to curtail the rights of LGBTQ Virginians. Marshall has repeatedly misgendered Roem throughout the campaign and has refused to debate her.

Roem responded to the robocalls on her Facebook page on October 9, writing:

"It's amazing how Del. Bob Marshall (R-13) lacked the courage to debate me but has just enough faux bravery as a 13-term incumbent to attack transgender children in a robocall going through the 13th District right now.
All this does is strengthen my resolve to soundly defeat him Nov. 7, and I hope it does for you too," Roem wrote.

"I will never back down from supporting *all* of our children, no matter what they look like, where they come from, how they worship or who they love, because everyone should feel welcome in our Virginia for who they are, not who politicians like Del. Marshall tell them they're supposed to be," she concluded.

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