She first came to public attention when NBC announced that she was gay. She had been married to Marc Alan Leibole for three years before she fell in love with a woman, and came out to her husband and to her father. She was subsequently featured on the cover of The Advocate. In 2003, she was one of the first prominent, openly lesbian campaigner for her father's bid for the president of the United States. Gephardt identifies as a Christian.
Gephardt worked on her father's political campaigns as a child in St. Louis, Missouri. She later became a social worker after graduating from Northwest University. In her practice as a social worker, she helped abused and mentally ill women in Washington, D.C. She married Marc Alan Leibole in 1997, a man she later called "my best friend," according to the Los Angeles Times. In the early 2000s, she attended Washington University, where she met Amy Loder,
Gephardt came out to her family as a lesbian in April of 2001. She had fallen in love with another woman, Loder, while in graduate school. In 2003, Gephardt quit her job as a social worker to campaign for her father full-time. According to the Knight Ridder Tribune, Gephardt is the first prominent LGBT relative to promote a major political campaign in the United States. Out magazine called her inclusion "a sea change in presidential campaigns: Not only are gay family members no longer considered a potential liability (see Mary Cheney), we are in fact a coveted constituency worth fighting for." In 2004, she helped start up chapters of the Stonewall Democrats in Washington, D.C.
She appeared on the Showtime reality show American Candidate in 2004. Gephardt said that the "show is giving me opportunities to express myself. I wanted to inspire gays and lesbians, women and other minority groups, and basically everybody who gets left out of the process." She also appeared on the February 1, 2007 (episode #1030), episode of The Daily Show. She is interviewed in the 2007 documentary For the Bible Tells Me So, along with her parents, where she describes her life and the encouragement she received from her parents after coming out. The film's director, Daniel Karslake, wanted to feature the Gephardts because her "family really espouses the values of loving your children no matter what," according to Curve. Gephardt was also featured on a cover of Curve in 2007.
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- Wilgoren, Jodi (2004-04-18). "Political Points". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-05-16.
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- "Chrissy Gephardt - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart | Comedy Central". Comedy Central. Retrieved 2017-05-17.
- Welker, DeAnn (30 November 2007). "'For the Bible Tells Me So': Literal 'Abomination'". The Oregonian. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
- Seitz, Matt Zoller (2007-10-05). "For the Bible Tells Me So - Movie - Review". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-05-16.
- Hammidi, Tania (November 2007). "You gotta have faith: congressional daughter Chrissy Gephardt tackles politics and religion and lives to tell the tale". Curve. Retrieved 16 May 2017 – via HighBeam Research. (Subscription required (. ))
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