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Robert Garcia Will Be First Out Gay Immigrant in Congress

Robert Garcia
Courtesy LGBTQ Victory Fund

Garcia, an immigrant from Peru and the mayor of Long Beach, Calif., has been elected to the U.S. House from California's 42nd Congressional District.

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Robert Garcia of California has been elected as the first out gay immigrant in Congress.

Garcia, currently mayor of Long Beach, has won the U.S. House seat in California's 42nd Congressional District, according to the LGBTQ Victory Fund.

A Democrat, he bested Republican John Briscoe, a businessman. As of 9:30 p.m. Pacific time, Garcia had 68 percent of the vote and Briscoe 32 percent. Because of redistricting, there was no incumbent in the race.

Garcia, a native of Peru, immigrated to the United States with his family at age 5. He has been mayor of Long Beach since 2014. He was the city's youngest mayor, the first out gay one, and the first immigrant to hold the office. He was one of several out political leaders featured in the keynote address at the 2020 Democratic National Convention.

Victory Fund President and CEO Annise Parker issued the following statement: "Robert has a proven track record of delivering real results for his community, from safeguarding abortion rights to championing education and climate policy. Voters were excited and motivated by his vision for the future. With anti-LGBTQ and anti-choice legislation currently moving through Congress, the stakes of this election could not have been higher -- and California voters delivered. We are confident Robert's deep policy experience and ability to build strong, diverse coalitions will make him an exceptional legislator. His win tonight will inspire countless other LGBTQ and first-generation Americans to pursue careers in public service."

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.