Metro Weekly

Houston elects lesbian Mayor: Annise Parker wins tough election despite anti-gay tactics of opponents supporters

”This election has changed the world for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community. Just as it is about transforming the lives of all Houstonians for the better, and that’s what my administration will be about.”

Annise Parker, 53, an out gay woman who just became the Mayor of Houston, Texas after a run-off election. She won with 53% of the vote though voter turn out is reported to have been very light. Parker did not deny being gay during the run up to yesterday’s election but she appeared to avoid making it much of an issue. However, some close supporters of her opponent, Gene Locke, contributed thousands of dollars to a group that distributed anti-gay literature and messages. Mr. Locke is reported to have condemned the anti-gay rhetoric. The last line of Parker’s online campaign bio says she has been with her partner, Kathy Hubbard, since 1990 and they have two children. Parker has been a fixture of the Houston political scene as both a City Council member and City Comptroller. She ran a campaign stressing fiscal responsibility. Some tried to paint the election as another battle between white gay politics versus religiously conservative African American voters. Houston has more than 2 million residents, with Latinos making up the largest ethnic population. Supporters chanted, “Si, se puede!” at her acceptance speech. (KTRK) (Parker for Houston)

”Most peoples’ understanding of Texas would not be this open and this welcoming. But the people of Houston obviously don’t feel that way.”

Chuck Wolfe of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund responding to the close victory for Annise Parker as Mayor of Houston, TX, making her the the first out gay politician to be elected to head one of America’s largest cities — currently 4th at more than 2,245,000 residents. (Reuters)

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JD Uy has been a Metro Weekly webmaster, distribution manager, blogger and videographer since 2002.

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