Election day is behind us, ballots are in, and most of the LGBTQ community in Colorado is celebrating now that Jared Polis is officially our governor. Polis is making history as the first openly gay governor to be elected anywhere in the U.S., not just Colorado, but that isn’t the only awesome news on the horizon. The nation has been swept by a rainbow wave of candidate wins, and there is more good news for Colorado than just the new governor.
Not all the queer candidates who ran in the U.S. were victorious, but enough won that people are sitting up and taking notice. According to New Now Next, Sharice Davids was elected as a representative for the third congressional district in Kansas. Not only is Davids liberal and openly queer, she is also a Native American.
Tammy Baldwin, currently serving as the only openly LGBTQ member of the Senate, was re-elected. Baldwin represents Wisconsin and fended off challenger Leak Vukmir, a Trump supporter.
This election shows that when our values are on the ballot, Oregonians will come together and fight like hell to stand up for what we believe in. #OregonVotes #TeamKate #orpol pic.twitter.com/G5T19ndzUd
— Kate Brown (@KateBrownForOR) November 7, 2018
Kate Brown, Governor of Oregon, also won her first full term in office. She identifies as bisexual, and became the first openly bi and openly LGBTQ governor in the U.S. in 2015.
“This election shows that when our values are on the ballot, Oregonians will come together, and fight like hell to stand up for what we believe in. Tonight we can say we fought to keep Oregon a welcoming and inclusive place for all,” she said in her victory speech.
Chris Pappas became the first openly LGBTQ person from New Hampshire to be elected to Congress. As a former state lawmaker, he is bringing a lot of local experience to the position.
MALCOLM KENYATTA: This is a special announcement in so many ways! My friend @malcolmforpa has been elected to the Pa House and is the first ever African-American gay man elected to the legislature and only the second Out person ever elected to the House!!! #RainbowWave pic.twitter.com/YL43gsCx0Y
— Brian Sims (@BrianSimsPA) November 7, 2018
Malcolm Kenyatta was the first African American gay man elected to statewide office in Pennsylvania. He is representing the 181st District.
In Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey won reelection. She is currently the only openly LGBTQ state attorney general serving in the country.
Annie Craig was elected to the House of Representatives from Minnesota. Not only is she the first openly LGBTQ person to be elected to the House from that state, incumbent Jason Lewis is known because he once complained that we can no longer call women sluts.
Susan Ruiz was elected to represent District 13 in the Kansas House of Representatives. She and Brandon Woodward, elected to the Kansas Legislature and representing the 30th District, are the first two openly queer people to be elected to Kansas legislature.
Julian Cyr won reelection to the Massachusetts State Senate. He’ll be representing LGBTQ interests at the state level on his home turf.
Not many trans candidates won their seats, but Gerri Canon became one of the two transgender women elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives. Lisa Bunker is the other trans woman elected.
While many complained that there was not as big of a national “blue wave” as they hoped, a lot of change happened in Colorado. Here are some of the highlights.
Four democrats were elected to the U.S. House of Representatives according to the Washington Post. Only three republicans were elected.
Jason Crow, democrat, beat out his republican opponent for U.S. House District 6.
Phil Weiser, the liberal choice for Attorney General, was elected. He claims to have the LGBTQ community’s best interests at heart, and received a nomination from One Colorado.
The new Colorado Secretary of State, Jena Griswald, is a Democrat. Dave Young, our new treasurer, is also a Democrat.
The State House is currently all blue, with democrats either winning or retaining their seats. Leslie Herod, the openly LGBTQ state representative, was unchallenged for her seat.
When it comes to ballot measures, the language in the state constitution allowing for criminal slavery has been removed. Industrial hemp was redefined, a measure that will hopefully help to expand the hemp industry in Colorado.