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Dem Congresswoman Seeks Restraining Order Against Transgender Ex-Intern

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Luke Rosiak Investigative Reporter
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A Democratic congresswoman filed for a restraining order against a transgender former intern, but a New Mexico judge scrapped it Wednesday.

Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a candidate for governor of New Mexico and chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, sought the order against Riley Del Rey, who filed a complaint with the House’s Office of Compliance alleging that Lujan Grisham fired her for being transgender, Roll Call reported.

The congresswoman “believes Ms. Del Rey intends to cause her serious harm or her behavior will harm other people in public settings,” she said in court documents, the Albuquerque Journal reported.

Del Rey interrupted the congresswoman’s speech at a pre-primary convention on March 10 and was arrested and charged with misdemeanor disturbing the peace. Lujan Grisham said in a complaint that Del Rey also disrupted an event in February.

The restraining order was granted Friday before a judge said it wasn’t necessary because the arrest already triggered a stay-away order. On Tuesday, The House’s Office of Compliance (OOC) held a mediation on the workplace discrimination complaint Tuesday, but Lujan Grisham wrote in court papers that she would “not be personally participating in the mediation for safety reasons.”

WATCH:

OOC is the office that became infamous for its settlement slush fund and the way in which it allegedly protected members accused of wrongdoing while binding victims with secrecy.

Del Rey alleged to the Albuquerque Journal that Lujan Grisham obtained the restraining order to avoid having to speak on the record in a hearing exploring if she fired her intern for being transgender. Her congressional office said it wouldn’t impact the ability of the mediation to proceed.

Del Rey interned in Lujan Grisham’s Washington office in 2015 after being placed there by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. Lujan Grisham is the chairwoman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. The intern was fired two weeks later and claims her firing came after the congresswoman discovered she is transgender and after complaints that the intern’s heels were too high.

In December 2017, Lujan Grisham’s office provided a letter it said was an apology from Del Rey saying, “I acknowledge that my behavior was unprofessional and unacceptable. I profusely apologize if I brought about shame, embarrassment, or worry to the office as it was never my intention.”

The Santa Fe New Mexican then reported that Del Rey denied ever sending such a letter.

“It’s literally fake news. I’ve never, ever seen it before,” Del Rey said, pledging to file an ethics complaint against the congresswoman, whose office said the letter was sent to it by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute.

On March 17 — the day after the restraining order was granted — Del Rey posted a video to Youtube showing the activist blasting an airhorn in a union function at which Lujan Grisham was speaking. “So Michelle will you be addressing these transgender women about these claims?” she asks.

Grisam says “I cannot meet with you.”

Del Rey is disruptive while clamoring about transgender rights.

A man at the event appears to grab the camera and Del Rey cries “He’s assaulting me! He just grabbed my camera! I would like to press charges on him!”

The congresswoman’s office denied claims Del Rey was fired for being transgender but contends she was fired for poor performance.

“Our office takes the rights of the LGBTQ community very seriously and we are dumbfounded by any suggestion that we would discriminate against anyone for any reason,” Lujan Grisham’s office said in a statement.

WATCH: “I’m a trans woman of color. And I just got my tits done, by the way”

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