The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund is putting its weight and coveted endorsement behind New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn for mayor of New York City, the group announced today.
A frontrunner in the race for the Democratic nomination for mayor, Quinn's election would make New York the largest municipality to ever be led by an out mayor.
"Her election would send a clear message that there are no barriers, no glass ceilings in New York City for LGBT leaders who want to serve their city as public officials," said Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Victory Fund, in a statement.
"Christine Quinn's record leading New York, in some of the city's most challenging times, speaks for itself. She has been a tireless advocate for all of the people of New York, passing seven on-time city budgets, expanding access to pre-kindergarten slots for tens of thousands of New Yorkers, and keeping thousands of teachers from being laid off," Wolfe added. "But she is also a hero to members of the LGBT community across New York and around the country, who see her honest and open service as a symbol of what's possible for all of us."
The first female and first out speaker of the New York City Council, Quinn has also been endorsed by EMILY's List and Empire State Pride Agenda.
Quinn was one of six mayoral candidates endorsed by Victory Fund today. The organization also endorsed Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt in Chapel Hill, N.C.; Daniel Miller in Harrisburg, Pa.; Ed Murray in Seattle; Mayor Annise Parker in Houston; and Gary Schiff in Minneapolis.
Victory Fund had what was their most successful Election Day ever in 2012. Having endorsed 180 candidates across the country, 124 won their races, including Tammy Baldwin, who became the Senate's first out member, and six members of the House of Representatives
According to Victory Fund's vice president of communications, Denis Dison, this year has the potential to be a big year on the mayoral level.
"Already we've endorsed six mayoral candidates, four of whom will compete in Top 50 U.S. cities, and we're not done yet," Dison told Metro Weekly. "This is shaping up to be the year of the gay mayor."
Today, Victory Fund also announced 15 endorsements in state and local races across the country. As the country's largest LGBT political action committee, the nonpartisan Victory Fund funnels millions of dollars, as well as strategic and technical support, into races across the country, having helped elect thousands of qualified, out LGBT candidates over the years.
[Photo: Christine Quinn (Courtesy of William Alatriste/New York City Council).]