Hillary Clinton was concerned about a State Department decision in 2011 to replace the words “mother” and “father” on U.S. passport applications and use gender-neutral terms, according to an email released on Wednesday.
“Who made the decision that State will not use the terms ‘mother and father’ and instead substitute ‘parent one and two’?” Clinton, 67, wrote in an email to staff on Jan. 8, 2011, nearly two weeks after the State Department quietly announced the change.
Referencing a Washington Post article about the new terminology and Fox News reporting on the issue, Clinton sent an email, with the subject line “Wash Post article,” to chief of staff, Cheryl Mills, and deputy, Jake Sullivan, saying that she would not defend it.
“I’m not defending that decision, which I disagree w and knew nothing about, in front of this Congress. I could live w letting people in nontraditional families choose another descriptor so long as we retained the presumption of mother and father,” she wrote. “We need to address this today or we will be facing a huge Fox-generated media storm led by [Sarah] Palin et al.”
About a half hour later, Mills replied: “Reaching out to folks to find out,” she wrote.
The word change was dropped. The next day, Mills sent Clinton an Associated Press article headlined: “State Department steps back on gender-neutral parentage, won’t replace terms ‘mother,’ ‘father’. ”
The present DS-11 Passport Application form, required for first-time passport applicants and children younger than 16, currently reads “Mother/Father/Parent” in its “Parental Information” section.
On her campaign website, Clinton lists “LGBT Equality” as one of her key issues.
“Hillary will fight for all our families,” her website reads on the issue of LGBT rights. “She urged the Supreme Court to rule in favor of nationwide marriage equality and was proud to celebrate this historic victory for our country. But she knows the fight for LGBT equality will not be finished until every American can not only marry, but also live, work, pray, learn, and raise a family free from discrimination.”