Mid-terms ‘tipping point’ for gay candidates

PinkNews logo on pink background with rainbow corners.

Gay campaigners have described the US mid-terms as a success after a record number of openly gay and lesbian candidates were elected.

The Gay Lesbian Victory Fund endorsed 67 victory-endorsed candidates for the federal, state and local offices, with some winning historic races that make them the first openly gay or lesbian candidates ever elected in their states or legislative bodies.

Chuck Wolfe, president of the group, called it a turning point.

Patricia Todd, became the first openly lesbian person elected in the state to represent District 54 in the Alabama.

Landmark election results also emerged in Arkansas where Kathy Webb became the first lesbian elected in the state, she will represent District 37.

Henry Fernandez, who won a seat on the Lawrence Township School Board, is the first openly gay person ever elected to any office in Indiana.

Al McAffrey, who will represent District 88 in the Oklahoma State House. McAffrey is the first openly gay person ever elected to the Oklahoma state legislature.

Jolie Justus, who will represent District 10 in the Missouri State Senate. Justus is the first openly gay state senator in Missouri history.

Ed Murray, who will represent District 43 in the Washington State Senate. Mr Murray, a former state representative, is the first openly gay state senator in Washington history.

Matt McCoy, who becomes the first openly gay candidate ever elected to the Iowa legislature. McCoy, a sitting state senator, came out during his last term.

Ken Keechl, who won a seat on the Broward County Commission in Florida, beating an appointee of Governor Jeb Bush.

Jamie Pedersen, who becomes the third consecutive openly gay person to be elected

to represent District 43 in the Washington State House.

Judge Virginia Linder will join Rives Kistler on the Oregon Supreme Court, making it the first state ever to have two openly gay Supreme Court Justices, according to preliminary results.

Mr Wolfe said: “This is the tipping point election for openly gay candidates.”

“We’re proving that qualified, well-prepared candidates matched with committed donors means gays and lesbians can move from having a stake in policy to actually making policy. There’s no reason to sit on the sidelines with our fingers crossed anymore.”