Openly gay congressman Robert Garcia gave RuPaul his 10s in an inspiring Pride Month speech.
Over the last few months, conservative lawmakers in at least 14 states have made it their mission to censor the drag community with harmful legislation.
From Arkansas’ tight restriction on drag performances to Montana banning Drag Queen story hour at public libraries, right-wing lawmakers are showing no signs of slowing down their tirade against the drag and LGBTQ+ communities.
While drag has seen an increase in political attacks from bigoted government officials, there have also been an array of lawmakers who have used their platform to celebrate the art form.
On 7 June, California-based lawmaker Garcia took to the house floor to honour one of the biggest names in drag, RuPaul, with a sickening poster and epic speech about his decades-long career.
“Mr Speaker, the House library is open. Now I want to commemorate the start of Pride Month by honouring the one and only queen of drag RuPaul,” Garcia exclaimed.
“An artist, a philanthropist, a barrier breaker RuPaul Charles has become an American phenomenon and an icon. Nobody has the charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent than RuPaul Charles.”
Garcia went on to reflect on Ru’s global impact and the massive feats he accomplished over the years, including his Billboard charting debut album, becoming the first gay Black man to host a talk show and his multi-Emmy award-winning show RuPaul’s Drag Race.
“Now Drag Race, and its many domestic and international spin-offs, has put drag in the global spotlight. The show has helped launch, uplift the careers of thousands of drag queens and artists,” Garcia continued.
— RuPaul’s Drag Race (@RuPaulsDragRace) June 7, 2023
“But more importantly, the show has served as a critical space to discuss issues around inclusion, trans rights, mental health and self-worth. And this message, couldn’t be more important as the LGBTQ+ community continues to fight for equality and acceptance.”
Towards the end of his speech, Garcia thanked RuPaul for his “years of leadership” and LGBTQ+ activism before ending his statement with the Drag Race host’s iconic phrase, “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else.”
In response to Garcia’s powerful tribute to Mama Ru, fans clamoured to social media to praise the two public figures.
One person wrote: “Congratulations to RuPaul! You are a legend and this recognition is well deserved.
Another fan tweeted: “Congressman… condragulations you are the winner of this week’s challenge.
Garcia’s tribute comes a few months after RuPaul slammed conservative lawmakers for introducing harmful anti-drag legislation.
In a powerful video via the Drag Race social media channels, Ru condemned right-wing political officials for “distracting us” before calling them “incompetent at solving real issues.”
“They look for easy targets so they can give the impression of being effective. They think our love, our light, our laughter and our joy are signs of weakness, but they’re wrong. That is our strength,” he said.
— RuPaul’s Drag Race (@RuPaulsDragRace) March 8, 2023