CNN LGBTQ town hall interrupted by protesters

A CNN LGBTQ town hall featuring many 2020 Democratic presidential candidates was interrupted by protesters on Thursday night, including one incident when a microphone was taken from a questioner at the event in Los Angeles.

A protester named Blossom C. Brown took the mic from a questioner while former Texas Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeButtigieg pushes back on O'Rourke threat to strip religious institutions of tax-exempt status O'Rourke raises .5 million in third quarter Conservatives slam Beto O'Rourke over threat to tax-exempt status for religious organizations MORE was on stage.

"Black trans women are dying, our lives matter!" Brown shouted. "I am an extraordinary black trans woman, and I deserve to be here!"

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"I am tired. I am so tired ... It's not just my black trans women, it's my black trans brothers too. And I'm going to say what I'm going to say," she added.

"Blossom, let me tell you something. The reason that we're here is to validate people like you," CNN anchor Don LemonDon Carlton LemonConservatives slam Beto O'Rourke over threat to tax-exempt status for religious organizations CNN LGBTQ town hall interrupted by protesters O'Rourke: Religious institutions should lose tax-exempt status if they oppose same-sex marriage MORE responded.

O'Rourke took to Twitter later to declare that "a town hall focused on trans women of color" will be held at a later date.

 

At another point, protesters chanted "Trans lives matter," prompting anchor Anderson Cooper to address the audience.

"Let me just point out: There is a long and proud tradition in history in the gay, lesbian and transgender community of protest and we applaud them for their protest," said Cooper. "AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power, an activist group working to end the AIDS crisis, was particularly active in protesting for access to experimental medicine to treat the virus in the 1980s and 1990s, at the height of the AIDS epidemic."

"And they are absolutely right to be angry and upset at the lack of attention, particularly in the media, on the lives of transgender" people, he added.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, 26 transgender people were killed in the U.S. in 2018, while 19 have been killed thus far in 2019.

The event, hosted by CNN and the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, included Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenSanders can gain ground by zeroing in on corruption Biden praises Buttigieg for criticizing GOP attacks: 'That's a good man' Warren enters crucial debate with big momentum MORE (D-Mass.), former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump hits Fox News's Chris Wallace over Ukraine coverage Schiff: Whistleblower testimony might not be necessary Trump warns Democrats will lose House seats over impeachment MORE, South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegTrump hits Fox News's Chris Wallace over Ukraine coverage Sanders can gain ground by zeroing in on corruption Biden praises Buttigieg for criticizing GOP attacks: 'That's a good man' MORE, Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisRepublicans wrestle with impeachment strategy Klobuchar takes shots at health and education plans supported by Sanders and Warren Kamala Harris to Trump Jr.: 'You wouldn't know a joke if one raised you' MORE (D-Calif.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharRepublicans wrestle with impeachment strategy Klobuchar takes shots at health and education plans supported by Sanders and Warren O'Rourke campaign says path to victory hinges on top 5 finishes in Iowa, Nevada MORE (D-Minn.) and Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRepublicans wrestle with impeachment strategy O'Rourke campaign says path to victory hinges on top 5 finishes in Iowa, Nevada O'Rourke raises .5 million in third quarter MORE (D-N.J.), former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, and businessman Tom SteyerThomas (Tom) Fahr SteyerThe Hill's Campaign Report: Impeachment fight to take center stage at Dem debate CNN LGBTQ town hall interrupted by protesters Democratic 2020 hopefuls tout LGBTQ plans at town hall MORE in addition to O'Rourke.

"People are dying, do something!" and "Trans lives matter!" were shouted at Buttigieg at one point.

"I do want to acknowledge what these demonstrators are speaking about, which is the epidemic of violence against black trans women," Buttigieg, who is openly gay, replied, to applause. "And I believe or would like to believe that everybody here is committed to ending that epidemic, and that does include lifting up ... visibility and speaking to it."