Today is Election Day, and 312 LGBTQ+ people are running for office (more than in any previous election in an odd-numbered year). The LGBTQ+ Victory Fund is “dedicated to electing out LGBTQ+ people who can further equality at all levels of government” and has endorsed 166 of the 312 candidates.
Here are some races to watch. In Virginia, democrat Danica Roem is running for state senator, and if elected, she will become the first out transgender senator in Virginia and in any southern state, and the second nationwide.
Also in Virginia, out members of the House of Delegates, Kelly Convirs-Fowler, Marcia Price, and Mark Sickles, are running for reelection. Out state senator Adam Ebbin is running as well. Laura Jane Cohen, Joshua Cole, Rozia Henson, and Adele McClure are queer nonincumbents running for the House.
Democrat Luanne Peterpaul, an out lesbian, is running to be the first queer woman in New Jersey’s Assembly. She has served as board chair for Garden State Equality, and had a major hand in creating New Jersey’s Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights. She also played a large role in prohibiting conversion therapy for minors in the state, and in bringing same-sex marriage equality to New Jersey citizens.
In Mississippi, Fabian Nelson, an out gay man, is expected to win the race to be the state’s first out state legislator. In August, he won a Democratic primary runoff against Roshunda Harris-Allen in Mississippi House of Representatives District 66.
Another out gay Mississippi man, Democrat Justin Lofton, is expected to be the first out county supervisor in the state.
Out lesbian Democrat Rue Landau is running to become the first out LGBTQ+ member of the Philadelphia City Council. She has served as director of the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations and the Fair Housing Commission, an attorney with Community Legal Services, and a member of ACT UP. Her marriage to her wife Kerry was the first same-sex union in Pennsylvania to receive a marriage license.
Sheena Barnes, a queer WOC, is running for reelection to the Toledo Board of Education in Ohio.