Meet the queer pro-gun veteran who’s running for Congress

Janessa Goldbeck is a queer, pro-gun military veteran

Janessa Goldbeck, a queer, pro-gun military veteran, is running for Congress after retiring from the marines just six weeks ago.

The pro-Second Amendment Democrat is hoping to become the US representative for California’s 53rd congressional district, based in San Diego.

Goldbeck previously worked in foreign policy but, when Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was repealed in 2010, she fulfilled a lifelong dream and joined the military.

The out queer woman trained as a combat engineer officer, and also served as a uniformed victim advocate, providing care and support to marines who had experienced sexual assault.

Goldbeck, 34, quit the military when her mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s, returning to San Diego to care for her.

The veteran told Buzzfeed in an interview that her campaign will focus on infrastructure, affordable housing, addressing the rising cost of living, the wage gap, as well as gun control.

Janessa Goldbeck is a queer, pro-gun military veteran

Janessa Goldbeck announced her campaign six weeks after quitting the military. (Janessa Goldbeck for congress/ Facebook)

While she is pro-gun and pro-Second Amendment, Goldbeck said she is against civilians having access to some of the weapons she used in the military.

She said: “I’m a gun owner. I support the Second Amendment and I know that guns are critical tools of our military.

“I carried an M16 and an M249 Squad Automatic Weapon in training, but I don’t believe they belong in the homes of the civilians.

“If you want to fire a military-grade weapon, join the Marines. We’re always looking for a few good people.”

Goldbeck supports universal background checks for gun owners and buy-back schemes for some military weapons.

She wrote on Instagram: “In San Diego, we are blessed with beautiful natural resources, as well as a diversity of cultures, languages, and ideas.

“But we know too many San Diegans are struggling to keep up with the rising costs of housing, to access affordable health care, and to pay for prescription drugs.

“We are concerned about the safety of our neighbourhoods and schools.

“And we are outraged at the way human beings are being treated at our border.

“Every day, there is a new assault: on environmental protections, on racial justice, on women’s and LGBTQ rights, or on simple common sense. I know that we can do better.”

Mayor Ted Terry, of Queer Eye fame, tweeted Goldbeck to show his support for her campaign.

He wrote: “She is an amazing leader, and will make an even more amazing member of Congress! Go Janessa!”