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Monday, June 24, 2024
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Gov. Tony Evers celebrates the start of Pride Month by raising the pride flag over the Wisconsin State Capitol May 31, 2024.

Evers raises pride flag over Capitol for sixth consecutive year

Gov. Tony Evers was joined by his administration and community members to raise the progress pride flag over the Wisconsin State Capitol to kick off Pride Month.

Gov. Tony Evers raised the pride flag over the Wisconsin State Capitol Friday for the sixth consecutive year to kick off the start of Pride Month.

Shortly after being sworn in for his first gubernatorial term in 2019, Evers flew the pride flag over the Capitol for the first time in state history. 

“All are welcome no matter who you are, what you believe, who you love or how you express your truest and most authentic self,” Evers said at Friday’s ceremony. “This is the people’s house. These elected leaders serve at the please of the people of the state. And yes, that means LGBTQ Wisconsinites too.” 

Evers was joined Friday by Wisconsin Department of Revenue Secretary David Casey, who spoke on the importance of the flag at the ceremony.

“We didn’t always feel comfortable outside of our community,” Casey said. “The pride flag became a symbol of celebration and a reminder to embrace individuality, to honor diversity and to cherish love and all of its forms.” 

Casey said when Evers raised the pride flag over the Capitol six years ago, it took on a new meaning to him: “we are welcome.” 

Cathy Grier, Chair of Open Door Pride, a LGBTQ+ volunteer organization based in Door County, also expressed the importance of being seen and represented by elected officials.

“The strength of our community depends on how our elected officials collectively represent all of us. When our representatives see us, we are healthier and happier, both as citizens and as human beings,” Grier said. “The pride flag doesn’t just represent support, it says that you see us and that you value us. It’s a wonderful feeling to know that the place we love so much is happy that we're here.” 

At the ceremony, Evers reaffirmed his commitment to fight for LGBTQ+ Wisconsinites and applauded the people who continue to speak out against “harmful anti-LGBTQ+” legislation.

In Wisconsin, 14 anti-LGBT+ bills were introduced during the 2024 Legislative session, none of which were successfully passed, according to the American Civil Liberties Union. 

Evers vetoed Republican-led efforts to pass anti-LGBTQ+ legislation in December and April. The bills would have banned transgender and gender nonconforming youth from playing on school athletic teams that aligned with their gender identity and banned those under the age of 18 from receiving gender-affirming care.

“You're damn right I vetoed every one of those bills just as I always will,” Evers said. “I promised long ago that as governor, I would veto any bill that makes Wisconsin less safe, less inclusive and less welcoming place for LGBT people and kids. That will never change, folks.” 

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The pride flag will fly above the Capitol through the end of June. 

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Anna Kleiber

Anna Kleiber is the state news editor for The Daily Cardinal. She previously served as the arts editor. Anna has written in-depth on elections, legislative maps and campus news. She is an intern with WisPolitics and a summer intern with Madison Magazine. Follow her on Twitter at @annakleiber03.

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