LGBT midterm poll winners: The face of the Rainbow Wave
One week has passed since the recent elections in the US and the LGBT community has definitely made historic gains with several LGBT midterm poll winners.
Among the LGBT candidates who made it were Rep. Krysten Sinema (D), who won a seat in the Arizona Senate, as well as Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D), who was re-elected for her second term in Wisconsin.
There’s also Sharice Davids (D-Kansas) and Deb Haaland (D-New Mexico), who are the first Native American women elected to Congress, as well as Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colorado), who was elected governor.
LGBT midterm poll winners against Trump, Pence
The double-digit wins of LGBT candidates in Congress are indicative of the “rainbow wave” that has swept the country (and part of the “blue wave” since all of them are Democrats).
Victory Fund, the LGBT organization that helped in getting openly LGBTQ candidates elected, said these victories show a “significant evolution in American politics.”
“The high-profile wins in Arizona, Kansas and Wisconsin this cycle make clear that an LGBTQ candidate who listens to voters and prioritizes their issues can win elected office anywhere– blue state or red state,” said Elliot Imse of Victory Fund.
Other winners include: Kate Brown of Oregon, Chris Pappas of New Hampshire, Sean Patrick Maloney of New York, Katie Hill of California, and David Cicilline of Rhode Island.
There are still other results being closely watched, like Gina Ortiz Jones’ battle in Texas against Rep. Will Hurd (R).
Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said: “Tonight, millions of LGBTQ voters and allies across the nation rejected the politics of hate and fear– and put Donald Trump and Mike Pence on notice.”
“The days of attacking LGBTQ people for political gain are over, and the American people will not stand for lawmakers who try to drum up votes by trafficking in hate,” Griffin said.
LGBT midterm poll winners should focus on basics
Of course, not all LGBT candidates won in last week’s elections: Christine Hallquist lost in the Vermont gubernatorial election as did Lupe Valdez in Texas.
But of the 391 out LGBT candidates on the ballot on Tuesday night, many of those who won were not limited to historically LGBT-friendly states.
“This rainbow wave of candidates is certainly concentrated in blue states and districts, but LGBTQ leaders in conservative parts of the nation are standing up and determined to become public servants while remaining true to who they are,” said Victory Fund president Annise Parker before the elections.
However, activist Keith Boykin, who served in President Bill Clinton’s administration, warned: “LGBTQ elected officials should focus on the same issues that got them elected.”
“For most of them, that’s bread-and-butter issues like health care, jobs and education. That doesn’t mean they should avoid LGBT issues, but they should focus on all issues that affect their constituents,” Boykin said.