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Biden Cancels LGBT Event Speech Amid Shutdown

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Denouncing Russia's actions in Crimea as nothing more than a "land grab," Vice President Joe Biden warned Russia on Tuesday that the U.S. and Europe will impose further sanctions as Moscow seeks to annex the Ukrainian territory. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Denouncing Russia’s actions in Crimea as nothing more than a “land grab,” Vice President Joe Biden warned Russia on Tuesday that the U.S. and Europe will impose further sanctions as Moscow seeks to annex the Ukrainian territory. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden is canceling a speech to an influential gay rights group because of the government shutdown.

Biden was scheduled to deliver the keynote address to about 3,400 people at the Human Rights Campaign’s annual dinner on Saturday. It’s the nation’s biggest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights group, and gay and lesbian activists were among President Barack Obama’s most loyal supporters during his re-election campaign.

But the partial shutdown of the federal government has led Obama and now Biden to cancel a number of events. Obama canceled an appearance at a glitzy Congressional Hispanic Caucus event Wednesday and has scaled back his upcoming trip to Asia.

The shutdown has forced hundreds of thousands of federal workers on furlough.

 (© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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