It’s an Election Special, as we celebrate LGBTQ victories across the nation last night! Anti-transgender messaging failed to produce victories in multiple races, a record number of out transgender legislators will be taking office, and an anti-LGBTQ Republican has been ousted as governor of Kentucky — these are the LGBTQ stories you need to know:
Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin has failed to secure his reelection, with multiple outlets confirming that Democratic opponent Andy Beshear has claimed a narrow victory. Bevin, a historically unpopular governor, has also been a vocal opponent of LGBTQ rights during his single term, including urging the Supreme Court to allow employers to discriminate against LGBTQ people, suing the Obama administration over guidance on transgender students, and vowing to defend religious liberty — at the presumed expense of LGBTQ people’s rights and freedoms.
Last night’s elections saw six openly transgender candidates win their races, including four incumbents, bringing the total number of out trans elected officials nationwide to 23, according to the LGBTQ Victory Fund. Races won include Aime Wichtendahl’s bid for a seat on the Hiawatha City Council, making Wichtendahl the first openly trans person to be elected to any office in Iowa. “Trans candidates are resonating with voters because of their authenticity and their focus on the core concerns of constituents,” said Annise Parker, President & CEO of Victory Fund. “That will continue in 2020, when an unprecedented number of trans candidates are expected to run for and win elected office.”
A GREAT night for LGBTQ candidates! 80 of our openly LGBTQ endorsed candidates have won so far tonight! See the breakdown and who has won so far… https://t.co/XhD8lfu3KQ
— Victory Fund (@VictoryFund) November 6, 2019
Efforts by Republicans in Kentucky and Virginia failed, as multiple pro-LGBTQ candidates bested those who embraced or were supported by anti-transgender messaging. Gov. Bevin, whose supporters ran an ad slamming transgender student athletes, failed to be reelected. And in Virginia, multiple candidates succeeded in the face of anti-transgender messaging and attack ads — including Del. Danica Roem, who was reelected on an even bigger margin after facing anti-trans attack ads from her anti-LGBTQ opponent. Roem has now made history by becoming the first openly trans state legislator to be reelected.
South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg will soon be unemployed. Last night, Buttigieg former chief of staff James Mueller succeeded in the city’s mayoral race. Buttigieg handpicked Mueller to succeed him and donated to Mueller’s campaign and actively canvassed for him, after the mayor decided against seeking a third term in favor of running for president. Mueller — who embraced Buttigieg’s record as mayor, while promising to focus more heavily on public safety and gun violence — continues an unbroken streak of Democratic mayors in the Indiana city that stretches back to 1972.
Big congratulations to James @MuellerforMayor and all of the South Bend Common Council members elected tonight! Great opportunities are ahead for continued progress and inclusive growth in our hometown.
— Pete Buttigieg (@PeteButtigieg) November 6, 2019