November 19, 2018

Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Candidates Are Winners

LGBT Election Winners 2018
Top Row (left to right) Gov. Kate Brown (D-OR)*, Governor-Elect Jared Polis (D-CO), Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)*, Senator-Elect Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI)*, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY)*, Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI)*
Bottom Row (left to right) Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA)*, Representative-Elect Angie Craig (D-MN), Representative-Elect Sharice Davids (D-KS), Representative-Elect Katie Hill (D-CA), Representative-Elect Chris Pappas (D-NH), Associate Justice Lidia Stiglich*, State Insurance Commissioner-Elect Ricardo Lara (D-CA) 

by Roy Steele


The Rainbow Wave: Midterm Election Results 2018


Colorado elected their first gay governor. The first bisexual woman was elected to the U.S. Senate. A lesbian Native American was elected to Congress for the first time, and California elected their first gay statewide office holder.

History was made in the 2018 midterm elections, with a record number of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, candidates running for political office, and a record number of LGBT candidates winning.

The nation’s second transgender state legislator-elect won a seat in the Colorado state legislature, and the third and fourth trans state legislators-elect won seats in the New Hampshire House of Representatives.

Appointed to the court by the Republican governor in 2016, Nevada voters in a statewide election retained the first lesbian justice to sit on their state Supreme Court.

Three states elected their first LGBT member of Congress (Kansas, Minnesota, New Hampshire), and the 116th United States Congress will have a record number of LGBT members (10). Two LGBT women are U.S. Senators, and nine LGBT representatives will serve in the House. Two of our nation’s governor’s are LGBT, while the first transgender major party nominee for governor lost, and two LGBT candidates for governor won.

There were 432 LGBT candidates for offices at every level across the country. Most of the candidates ran as Democrats 86.1% and 61% won, while ‘other parties’ accounted for 8.6% and 35% won, and the self-loathing Republican party had 5.3% and 13% won. Overall I think it’s fantastic that 244 LGBT candidates (56.5%) won! We won 2 of 4 (50%) races for governor, and 10 of 14 (71.4%) races for Congress! That’s a rainbow wave!

“Never in our nation’s history have so many openly LGBTQ people decided to run for office and be the change they demand to see in the world – and we are determined to ensure this energy does not fade,” said Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund. “We were able to ensure many of these leaders crossed the finish line on Election Day, and importantly, LGBTQ incumbents were overwhelmingly reelected by voters in states both red and blue.”

Many pundits say this is the ‘year of the women’ and I don't disagree. The first two Native American women were elected to Congress, along with the first two Muslim American women, while Texas elected their first two Hispanic representatives, the youngest woman in history was elected to the House, and 123 women will serve in the next Congress.

I strongly feel that we need to encourage more women to participate in politics and government, and more people of color and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, people too. Our government and elected officials DO NOT reflect the demographics of our population. Straight white old men continue to run everything, and that’s a travesty that needs to change.

Our country was founded on the principle of equality, and the Declaration of Independence even says “all men are created equal.” History reflects that we’re not all created equal. We have a ‘modern’ political party that’s committed to voter suppression and disenfranchising minorities. They cheat and get away with it. When you take that into consideration, it makes this year’s midterm election results even more remarkable.

New Hampshire's new Congressman-Elect Chris Pappas
Congressman-Elect Chris Pappas (D-NH)
After the disastrous 2016 election, I was apprehensive about the 2018 midterms. Luckily, MSNBC and CNN projected that Democrats would take over the House well before midnight west coast time, so I didn’t stay up too late watching the inestimable Steve Kornacki announce the results. The pundits wouldn’t characterize the gains as a blue wave on election night, as they didn’t foresee that the net gain would approach 40 seats.

Gay genius Nate Silver said the real story of the midterms was the record-breaking 60 million people who turned out to vote for House Democrats. If Democrats can expand their voter base further, and a sizable number of voters continue to flee the GOP, anything is possible in 2020.


To recap: A record number of Americans participated in the political process this year. A record number of Democrats won. A record number of Democratic women won. A record number of Democratic people of color won. A record number of Democratic LGBT people won

Even though Democrats didn’t win back the Senate, they won the House.

It was a blue wave after all!

Correction: The Victory Fund is the best source of information about LGBT candidates for public office. They maintain an accurate database of  candidates running in local, state, and federal elections. When this article was published, they stated that 399 LGBT candidates ran for office and 161 were victorious. They updated their numbers and 432 LGBT candidates ran for office in 2018, and 244 won. The article was updated on Nov. 20, 2018 to reflect the correct numbers.

NOTE: A list of the high profile lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, winning candidates in the 2018 midterm elections can be found below.

Rainbow Wave lesbian gay bisexual transgender high profile midterm election winners
Top Row (left to right) Gov. Kate Brown (D-OR)*, Governor-Elect Jared Polis (D-CO), Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)*, Senator-Elect Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ)
Middle Top Row (left to right) Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI)*, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY)*,
Middle Bottom Row (left to right) Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA),* Representative-Elect Sharice Davids (D-KS), Representative-Elect Angie Craig (D-MN), Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI)*,
Bottom Row (left to right) Representative-Elect Katie Hill (D-CA), Representative-Elect Chris Pappas (D-NH), Associate Justice Lidia Stiglich*, State Insurance Commissioner -Elect Ricardo Lara (D-CA)
*Incumbent

High Profile LGBT Midterm Election Winners 2018

Governor
Governor Kate Brown (D-OR)*
Governor-Elect Jared Polis (D-CO)
U.S. Senate
Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)*
Senator-Elect Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ)
U.S. House of Representatives
Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI)*
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY)*
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI)*
Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA)*
Representative-Elect Angie Craig (D-MN)
Representative-Elect Sharice Davids (D-KS)
Representative-Elect Katie Hill (D-CA)
Representative-Elect Chris Pappas (D-NH)
California Insurance Commissioner
Insurance Commissioner-Elect Ricardo Lara (D-CA)
Nevada Supreme Court
Associate Justice Lidia Stiglich*
Transgender State Legislators
Representative-Elect Brianna Titone - Colorado House (CO-27)
Representative-Elect Gerri Cannon - New Hampshire House (Strafford-18)
Representative-Elect Lisa Bunker - New Hampshire House (Rockingham-18)
*Incumbents

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