Tegan And Sara On Gay Rights, Women's Rights And Republican Wrongs

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Mega musical stars like Bruce Springsteen and Jay Z have already declared their support for current President and Democratic candidate Barack Obama in the upcoming U.S. presidential election, and now popular indie pop twins Tegan and Sara are also backing the President to repeat in the November 6 election.

According to Sara Quin, her support comes down to two things -- women's rights and gay rights -- which she says the Democrats address more effectively than the Republicans.

"Women's rights and gay rights," Quin tells HuffPost Canada Music when asked what the important electoral topics of the day are for her. "Those are the big issue for me. And not because I'm a woman and because I'm gay. I think that that we're talking about the social fabric and we're talking about ideas that are institutionalized in this society and how that changes a generation and I think that's important. Truly, truly important."

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Tegan and Sara have a unique perspective on U.S. politics. The Canadians are both openly gay, and they both spend a substantial amount of time living in the States -- Tegan splitting her time between Los Angeles and Vancouver, and Sara between New York and Montreal. Because of that, they've seen firsthand how Obama can inspire people.

"Obvious this election is on a lot of people's minds," says Sara. "I was living in the States in New York when the last election happened and it was such a cool time and there was a real spirit and energy that I had never experienced around an election. And I realize this is going to be different, but this is a big election, this is going to be a big four years if Obama gets in."

The pair have never been particularly shy about using their fame to discuss causes they believe in. They were recently on the cover of Under the Radar magazine's "Protest" issue, photographed holding a sign that said "The rights of the minority should never be subject to the whim of the majority." They were also active in supporting Quebec students in their recent protest against that provincial government, have spoken out on behalf of Against Me!'s transgender punk rocker Tom Gabel, and were vocal during California's Prop 8 debates.

That said, Sara is careful to articulate that her support for Obama and the Democratic party is a personal choice.

"It's hard what to say publicly and what not to because I think it's incredibly complicated and what's especially complicated is you basically have two people who are trying to represent a whole country and it's impossible," she starts. "I live mostly in the U.S. and going from one neighborhood to another it's complicated trying to represent those people, so I can't even imagine trying to be one person trying to represent an entire country's worth of people.

"And here's the thing, I may not agree with 50 percent of the people in America, but it's funny how quickly how what I agree with and what you may agree with become 'right' and 'wrong.' Like, when it's taxes for example. I don't think there's a right and a wrong way to tax people. It really depends upon how you see yourself and how you see society."

Sara then uses her time spent in Montreal, Quebec to further articulate her views, explaining that what it really comes down to is that she doesn't believe the Republicans have the authority to tell her how she should live her life, so that's why she's not supporting them.

"I live in Quebec and I pay more tax than the rest of my family who live all over Canada, and more than my friends in the States or wherever, and I buy in," she says. "I buy in because I love the way that [Quebec] society feels. I love that everybody has the opportunity to go to school. I love that health care isn't a problem. Or that property isn't expensive. Or that you don't have to be rich to afford an apartment.

"I buy in and participate willingly because that's the kind of person that I am. But it's not right or wrong. But there are issues that are right or wrong. And the Republicans, I feel, unfortunately, are the ones that dabble in right or wrong policy-making a lot more. Y'know, telling me who I can marry, or what I can do with my body is wrong.

"It's just not right."

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