A rainbow wave on Tuesday night carried at least 100 openly LGBTQ candidates to victory in political races across the United States.
Eighty-three of the winners declared so far were endorsed by the LGBTQ Victory Fund, with victories in 73 local elections, five state legislative races, four mayoral elections, and one judicial race, making November 5, 2019 a historic occasion. Wins by other out candidates (not all out candidates meet Victory Fund's standards for endorsement, which include viability) brought Tuesday's total to 100 (out of 200 openly LGBTQ candidates who ran). Several other races are undecided or will go to runoffs, so the numbers may go higher.
With Tuesday's results added to those of elections earlier in the year, at least 145 out candidates have won office this year, the most ever in an odd-numbered election year, Victory Fund reports. A total of 382 out candidates have run for office this year, and of those, 176 were endorsed by Victory Fund. Most out candidates have run as Democrats.
Among the out candidates ore men ran than women in the year to date, but women had a higher rate of success, with 46.2 percent of women winning and 36.9 percent of men. The winners have included a diverse mix of gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, pansexuals, transgender people, and those identifying as queer.
Victories included reelecting all five sitting LGBTQ state lawmakers in Virginia, most notably Danica Roem.
Pennsylvania voters elected Tiffany Palmer, a queer attorney in Philadelphia, to the Common Pleas Court, reports The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Eddie Sundquist, a gay man, was elected mayor of Jamestown, N.Y., according to The Post-Journal. Doraville, Ga., Mayor Joseph Geierman, College Park, Md., Mayor Patrick Wojahn, and Carrboro, N.C., Mayor Lydia Lavelle, all LGBTQ officeholders, won reelection.
Lesbian Eliz Markowitz, a Democrat, ended up as the top vote-getter in a special election for an open Texas House of Representatives seat, according to The Texas Tribune. She’s not done running just yet; she will face Republican Gary Gates in a runoff, as no candidate received a majority of the vote. She finished with 39 percent of the vote to Gates’s 28 percent, though Markowitz was the only Democrat running in the Tuesday election while Gates was one of three Republicans. The runoff will probably be held in December or January.
There were losses for LGBTQ candidates as well. Michael Bowman, a gay man running for treasurer in Kentucky, lost even as fellow Democrat Andy Beshear won the governor’s mansion.
But Victory Fund reports that nearly three-quarters of its endorsed candidates won Tuesday night and nearly two-thirds so far this year. The most up-to-date results for Tuesday can be found on Victory Fund's website.