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Nancy Pelosi's Possible House Successor Places His Gay Identity Front and Center


Nancy Pelosi's Possible House Successor Places His Gay Identity Front and Center
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Calif. Sen. Scott Wiener, one of our Advocates of the Year, is a worthy heir to both Pelosi and another San Francisco icon, Harvey Milk.

Nbroverman

California Sen. Scott Wiener may be the busiest man in politics. He’s definitely one of the most committed, especially to the LGBTQ+ community. The San Francisco-based Democrat never seems to take a day off — one day he’s pushing for expanded access to the preventative HIV medications PrEP and PEP, the next he’s watching Governor Gavin Newsom sign the latest bill he authored. In September, that legislation provided protections for LGBTQ+ foster youth, ensuring they will not be placed in hostile homes.

“LGBTQ youth deserve a supportive and affirming home the same as any other child,” Wiener said in a statement. “I’m proud that California is taking this step to expand support for LGBTQ youth at a time when elected leaders in other states are targeting them with cruel restrictions and hate.”

Also this fall, Wiener oversaw the inauguration of San Francisco’s Eagle Plaza, a first-of-its-kind public area dedicated to queer history and, specifically, the leather community. Wiener is a regular fixture at Pride parades, the Folsom Street Fair, and philanthropic events, which is impressive considering how much legislative work he actually accomplishes.

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Since his election to California’s Senate in 2016, Wiener has worked at a dizzying pace, authoring 65 successful bills that directly address the issues of California, especially the housing crisis, mental health, gun violence, immigration, and clean transportation. His devotion to the queer community, in all its beautiful diversity, is tireless. Some examples include SB 107, which provides refuge for trans kids and their families in California so they can avoid criminal prosecution for seeking or allowing gender-affirming care in states like Texas and Alabama; SB 219, which protects LGBTQ+ seniors in long-term care facilities; SB 159, which allows pharmacists to provide PrEP and PEP without a prescription; and SB 132, which requires prisons to house transgender incarcerated individuals where they will be the safest.

An East Coast transplant educated at Duke and Harvard, Wiener has lived in the Castro since 1997. Wiener was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 2010 by the district Harvey Milk once represented.

This year, Wiener also launched an exploratory committee for California’s 11th congressional district, currently held by Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi. While Wiener said he will not run against Pelosi, he’s interested in her seat when she retires. Those are big shoes to fill, but Wiener has already proved himself a worthy successor to Milk, another beloved, history-making San Francisco icon.

Read about our other Advocates of the Year here.

Nbroverman
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Neal Broverman

Neal Broverman is the Editorial Director, Print of Pride Media, publishers of The Advocate, Out, Out Traveler, and Plus, spending more than 20 years in journalism. He indulges his interest in transportation and urban planning with regular contributions to Los Angeles magazine, and his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He lives in the City of Angels with his husband, children, and their chiweenie.
Neal Broverman is the Editorial Director, Print of Pride Media, publishers of The Advocate, Out, Out Traveler, and Plus, spending more than 20 years in journalism. He indulges his interest in transportation and urban planning with regular contributions to Los Angeles magazine, and his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He lives in the City of Angels with his husband, children, and their chiweenie.