Metro Weekly

Historic number of LGBTQ candidates elected in 2020

334 of 782 out LGBTQ candidates were elected to public office, with 57% of Victory Fund endorsees winning their races

pride, flag, rainbow, lgbtq
Photo: Jasmin Sessler / Unsplash

More openly LGBTQ candidates won elected office in 2020 than any other election year in U.S. history, according to statistics compiled by the LGBTQ Victory Fund. 

In total, 334 out LGBTQ candidates won races for public office, comprising 42.7% of the total number of 782 candidates who appeared on the ballot this year.

Candidates who were incumbents were the most successful, with 84% winning re-election, compared to only 27% of non-incumbents. 

Of all candidates who sought office this year, 390 earned an LGBTQ Victory Fund endorsement. Of those 390, 222, or 57%, won their races, compared to only 112, or 28% of the 392 non-endorsed candidates. 

In 2020, higher numbers of LGBQ cisgender men ran for office than LGBQ cisgender women, yet cisgender women had a better success rate, with half of them winning their elections, versus only 38.9% of cisgender males.

More than one-third, or 36.9%, of out transgender women who ran for office were successful, as were 37.1% of LGBTQ candidates of color, who taken as a whole, comprised 35.7% of all candidates appearing on the ballot.

Related: The 2020 election: LGBTQ candidates win big

In terms of partisan affiliation, 76.4% of LGBTQ candidates ran as Democrats, while only 2% of LGBTQ candidates ran as Republicans. However, when it came to success, just 41.5% of all LGBTQ Democrats won their races, while only 36.9% of Republicans did.

“In one of the most vitriolic and unprecedented election cycles of our time, LGBTQ candidates continue winning elections in numbers and in parts of the country thought unthinkable a decade or two ago,” Annise Parker, a former mayor of Houston and the president and CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund, said in a statement.

“LGBTQ people span every community — we are people of color, women, immigrants, and people with disabilities — and we are able to use that life experience to connect with voters from many backgrounds,” Parker added. “This beautiful diversity provides an opportunity to connect on some level with every single voter in America. That is the reason LGBTQ candidates are winning in unprecedented numbers, and this will only accelerate in the years ahead.”

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