Republican Senator from Utah Sentor Orrin Hatch has not been known in the past for his pro-LGBT stance in politics. Hatch’s anti-LGBT record includes being a big supporter of the Defensive Marriage Act, criticizing the 2013 Supreme Court decision on a portion of DOMA, praising the Masterpiece Cakeshop decision, and calling the democratic party 30 years ago the “party of homosexuals.” However, as of lately, Hatch’s position has taken a turn towards the pro-LGBT side, seeming as if he has had a change of heart. The seven-term senator spoke Wednesday from the Senate floor about national suicide rates among LGBT and recognized that gender identity is not a choice. In support of the LGBT community, before his retirement, Hatch issued the following encouragement: “No one should feel less because of their orientation. They deserve our unwavering love and support. They deserve our validation and the assurance that not only is there a place for them in this society but that it is far better off because of them. These young people need us and we desperately need them.” For his recent acceptance and courage to speak, Human Rights Campaign officials applaud Senator Hatch.