(Extensions of Remarks - May 23, 2013)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E734]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]



                          HON. BETTY McCOLLUM

                              of minnesota

                    in the house of representatives

                        Wednesday, May 22, 2013

  Ms. McCOLLUM. Mr. Speaker, I had the honor of serving as a member of 
the Minnesota House of Representatives for eight years prior to being 
elected to Congress in 2000. One of my Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party 
colleagues from Minneapolis, State Rep. Karen Clark, was a constant and 
vocal champion for social justice, economic opportunity, environmental 
sustainability, and human rights. State Rep. Clark continues to serve 
in the Minnesota House, having just completed her thirty-third 
legislative session. Karen's passion, determination, and commitment as 
a legislator were recently displayed for the entire nation to admire as 
she authored legislation and lead the push for marriage equality. That 
legislation passed the legislature, was signed into law, and now 
Minnesota is the twelfth state in the union to legalize same sex 
  Today, the White House is recognizing the achievements and 
contributions of ten openly lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender 
(LGBT) public officials from across the United States. One of those 
officials being honored is State Rep. Karen Clark, who will join a 
distinguished group of leaders named ``Harvey Milk Champions of 
Change.'' This is a tremendous honor for Karen and I want to extend my 
heartfelt congratulations on this well deserved recognition.
  Throughout her career, Karen Clark has advocated and given voice to 
the issues and hopes of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender 
Minnesotans. As the longest serving openly lesbian state legislator in 
the country, Karen has battled against discrimination, hate-crimes, and 
intolerance faced by LGBT Americans, yet she has always conducted 
herself with a spirit of openness, kindness, and courage. Karen has 
dedicated three decades to improving the lives of LGBT Minnesotans, but 
also all families in her South Minneapolis district. From LGBT youth to 
new African or Latino immigrants, low-income families to Native 
American women, Karen Clark has always been on the side of making 
government work for people to improve their lives.
  Again, I would like to extend my congratulations and the shared sense 
of pride many friends, colleagues, and constituents of Karen feel as 
she is recognized by President Obama for her leadership. State Rep. 
Karen Clark is truly a national leader for LGBT Americans and a 
champion for all Minnesotans.