WASHINGTON — Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is one of only a few presidential candidates, including U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and businessman Andrew Yang, who will skip a CNN townhall focused on LGBTQ issues.

The event, sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, will take place Thursday in Los Angeles and provide each candidate an allotted time to field questions from the audience as well as a moderator.

Tusli Gabbard, seen here on CNN’s Van Jones Show, has complained about not getting enough attention from national news outlets. Screen shot

Gabbard has a complicated history with the LGBTQ community.

When she was a state representative she took part in her father Mike Gabbard’s crusade against same sex marriage in Hawaii, and even took the House floor to denounce the views of “homosexual extremists.” 

Since then Gabbard says she’s evolved on the issue and is supportive of gay rights, although there are some in the LGBTQ community who have remained skeptical. The Human Rights Campaign has given Gabbard scores of 92, 88 and 100 on her voting record while in Congress. 

Gabbard’s campaign told CNN the reason she couldn’t participate in the forum was due to a scheduling conflict. The congresswoman is scheduled to be in Iowa on Tuesday and Wednesday for a series of presidential campaign events. On Thursday, she is scheduled to be in New Hampshire. 

Gabbard will take part in next week’s Democratic National Committee debate in Ohio after missing out on the DNC’s September contest due to low poll numbers.

She has complained about the qualification process, saying it lacks transparency and benefits candidates who have more name recognition. She’s also repeatedly attacked the press, saying it at the same time smears and ignores her.

Gabbard’s campaign did not respond to a Civil Beat request for comment.

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