Caitlyn Jenner considers herself a conservative Republican. And the star of I Am Cait claims that it’s her political identity, not her transgender announcement, that’s gotten her a bigger backlash, reported Out.
The surprise revelation came during a speaking engagement at the University of Pennsylvania, when a student questioned Caitlyn as to her rationale for not becoming a Democrat. The question resulted from the way that the Democratic party is credited for giving more support to transgender rights than the Republican party.
“I have gotten more flack for being a conservative Republican than I have for being trans,” declared Jenner.
The reality TV star was being interviewed by Buzz Bissinger. Buzz is known for the famous Vanity Fair profile, and Bissinger also is working with Caitlyn on a memoir, which will tell the story of her life as well as her transition. That tell-all is scheduled to debut in spring of next year.
“Just because you change gender doesn’t mean you change your core beliefs,” pointed out Buzz.
In addition to being candid about her Republican ideology, the 66-year-old star of I Am Cait answered a student’s question that probed into the criticism by some that Jenner is not a good role model for the transgender community. At that, the Olympic winner was firm in standing up for herself.
“Well, I’m not a role model! I’m so new to this community I don’t expect to be one,” declared Caitlyn.
Along with responding to the criticism that she remains a Republican and has failed when it comes to being a role model, Bissinger requested that the I Am Cait star address those who have implied that she chose to transition primarily to make money or to boost her fame. To that question, Jenner was adamant in emphasizing the integrity and authenticity of her transition.
“I don’t need the money. So I don’t understand that claim. No one transitions for financial gain. No way…You don’t do it unless you know deep down in your soul that it’s the right thing to do. If I can’t be honest with myself about what I’m doing, I’m no good for anything.”
The questioning from the student about her political affiliation is not the first time that Jenner has discussed her decision to remain a Republican and her conservative views, pointed out Fox News.
During an appearance on The Ellen Degeneres Show, Ellen asked about same-sex marriage. Cait contended that because she’s older, she prefers what she regards as traditional marriage.
“Gay marriage…. I’m a traditionalist. I’m older than most people in the audience. I kind of like tradition, and it’s always been a man and a woman. I’m thinking, ‘I don’t quite get it,'” admitted Jenner.
However, despite that confession about her conservative political views and uncertainty about gay marriage, the I Am Cait star subsequently changed her attitude, reported the Chicago Tribune.
Ellen DeGeneres’ comments about Jenner’s Republican affiliation may have affected Cait, because the talk show host was careful to stress that she felt being a Republican conservative seemed to clash against the LGBT community.
Jenner then tried to meet Ellen halfway.
“If that word marriage is really, really that important to you,” she said, “I can go with it.”
But following the barrage of criticism, Caitlyn did not change her political affiliation but she did change her attitude toward marriage equality in a blog.
“Like many people, there was a time when I didn’t realize how important it is for gay couples to have the right to get married. But after hearing from my gay friends and learning more about the hardships they faced because of discrimination, it became clear to me that everyone should be able to marry the person they love.”
During her appearance at the University of Pennsylvania, the reality TV star also shared her heartbreak as well over one aspect of her life. Prior to his death more than a decade ago, Cait never revealed to her father that she was transgender, reported E News.
But she does have a vision of herself getting positive feedback from the man who meant so much to her.
“You know what, you’re doing a good job. You’re making a difference,” Jenner revealed she envisions her father saying to her now.
The Season 2 premiere of I Am Cait will be broadcast Sunday, March 6 at 9 p.m. on the E! Network.
[Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images for The Point Foundation]