ELECTION 2016: Openly LGBTQ Candidates Vie To Make History Across Nation
Seven Out Hopefuls Could Become Firsts In Their States
This yearâ€™s election contests arenâ€™t just going to be a big day for the presidential race. There are numerous state and local officers up for election. Because we know just how important â€”Â perhaps even more so â€”Â these down-ballot races can be, The New Civil rights Movement is breaking down the other races and what initiatives progressives should be paying attention to as they head to the ballot box on Tuesday.Â
In Part 1 we looked at the 12 states electing a new governor. Part 2 took a look at some of the key US Senate races. This time, weâ€™re taking a look at a few of the candidates who could become the first or only openly LGBTQ legislator in (or from) their state. Â
Coloradoâ€™s 5 Congressional District: Misty Plowright
Misty Plowright is the first transgender candidate from Colorado, and sheâ€™s running for Congress. Sheâ€™s been decried by the Right and ignored by her opponent Doug Lamborn, but as she told the Denver Post, â€œItâ€™s hard to come after me. Iâ€™m not ashamed of who I am.â€ No Democrat has ever done better than 40 percent, though thatâ€™s not stopping Misty from trying. â€œIâ€™ve been underestimated my entire life. Well, Iâ€™m still here and Iâ€™m still going,â€ she said.
Colorado House of Representatives, 8th District: Leslie Herod
If elected, Leslie Herod will become the first African American LGBTQ person to serve in the Colorado legislature. Sheâ€™s running in a reliably blue district and is poised to make history.Â
North Carolina House of Representatives, District 98: Jane Campbell
Jane Campbellâ€™s opponent, Republican John R Bradford III, was one of the chief architects and proponents of HB2, which was motivation enough to convince Campbell to run. Sheâ€™s not affiliated with any party though sheâ€™s heavily backed by Democrats. Sheâ€™s also endorsed by HRC, Equality NC, and The News-Observer. Sheâ€™s poised to be the only openly gay member of the legislature when elected. (Chris Sgro, executive director of Equality NC, was appointed to his temporary position to complete the last session.)Â
Georgia House of Representatives, 101st District: Sam Park
Sam Park joins a long line of openly gay men vying to be the first to be elected in Georgia and may well be the first to actually make it happen. His poll numbers show him in a very tight race against incumbent Valerie Clark. What makes this interesting is that Park comes from Gwinnett County, where, as of this month, a majority of voters represent minority communities. Pundits from both sides of the aisle say this shows the coming change of Georgiaâ€™s red-voting habits to a deeper shade of purple. Parkâ€™s opponent was also a supporter of Georgiaâ€™s discriminatory â€œReligious Freedom Restoration Actâ€ which was famously vetoed.Â (Full disclosure: I know Sam personally and on the board of a group that endorsed him. I also think he’s great.)
Washingtonâ€™s 7th Congressional District: Brady PiÃ±ero Walkinshaw
Brady Walkinshaw is looking to make the move from the state legislature up as the first openly LGBTQ Latino American elected to Congress. Walkingshawâ€™s district is safely Democratic, but his opponent, Pramila Jayapal, is also a Democrat. Both candidates have stood up for LGBTQ rights and immigrant rights and it seems as though Washington (both the state and the district) will be well served by either candidate.
Montanaâ€™s Congressional Representative: Denise Juneau
Denise Juneau could become the first Native American in Congress and the first openly LGBTQ representative from Montana. However, recent polling has her opponent, Trump-endorsing former Navy SEAL Ryan Zinke, up 19 points. Â
Arizona House of Representatives, District 2: Daniel Hernandez
Daniel Hernandez first made news when he helped then-Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords stay alive after she was shot in 2011 at a public event. Now heâ€™s advocating for stricter gun laws and LGBTQ rights. If elected, heâ€™ll be the only openly LGBTQ legislator in Arizona.Â
This is just a small sampling of some of the many openly-LGBTQ candidates running in 2016. There are also numerous LGBTQ-friendly candidates running. Be sure to do your research before you head to the polls â€” you could help make history! Check out your local LGBTQ PAC or other groups and make sure your voice is heard!
Image via TorbakHopper and a Creative Common License on Flickr
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
Extremist Group Targets Florida High School’s Yearbook Over Inclusion of LGBTQ Students Section
The publication of a Florida high school yearbook that included an LGBTQ section has drawn rebuke from a conservative group, The Orlando Sentinel reports.
Lyman High School’s 256-page yearbook includes two pages that highlight the school’s LGBTQ students and features gender identity terms such as “genderfluid” and “nonbinary.”
The Seminole County Public Schools in response to the criticism is offering to issue refunds or reprint the yearbook without the LGBTQ section that the conservative Seminole County Moms for Liberty claims is offensive.
“They shouldn’t have any sexual definitions in a yearbook,” the group’s chapter chair Jessica Tillmann told The Sentinel.
“This is a yearbook that goes to every student as young as 14.”
The school’s yearbook is stirring controversy for a second straight year after the district in 2022 considered putting stickers over photos of a student walkout protesting the so-called “don’t say gay” law, the report said.
The Sentinel’s Skyler Swisher reports that “An LGBTQ+ section in this year’s yearbook includes a picture of members of the student’s Gay-Straight Alliance, definitions of key LGBTQ+ terms, a passage on the evolution of pronouns and a profile of a student who advocates for the LGBTQ+ community.”
Danielle Pomeranz, the school yearbook’s faculty advisor, isn’t on board with the district’s decision to remove the LGBTQ content.
“They are definitions,” Pomeranz told The Sentinel.
“They are not teaching anything about sex at all. … Nobody is teaching anybody about sex acts. It is ridiculous.”
Pomeranz has since resigned from her position in the district, citing in part the Sunshine State’s political climate and an unsupportive district, the report said.
“We’ve always had the LGBTQ+ spread in there,” she said.
“Our job as journalists and members of the yearbook staff is to provide coverage of the entire school and that includes all of the communities, including the LGBTQ+ community.”
Image via Shutterstock
RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
‘No Longer the Lord’s Chicken’: ‘Christian Woman’ Says She’s ‘Grieving’ Over ‘Woke’ Chick-fil-A Hiring a Diversity Officer
A self-described “Christian woman” who is a contributor to the far-right wing students organization Turning Point USA, is being widely mocked for posting a video attacking Chick-fil-A over claims the conservative, privately-owned, faith-based fast food restaurant chain recently hired a diversity officer.
“So I’m grieving,” the video, apparently by Morgonn McMichael (below), begins. “It’s lunchtime. I’m here with Aubrey. And we really wanted some Chick-fil-A but because they decided to hire a diversity, equity and inclusion corporate position, and also bow down to the woke lord because their ESG scores, and also I found out do you know their chicken is funded by BlackRock and Vanguard? Yeah their farms, they use Tyson and this other farm, BlackRock and Vanguard funded chicken.”
If you think that’s a mouthful just wait, there’s more.
“Chick-fil-A,” Morgonn continues, “you are no longer the Lord’s chicken. You’re actually the woke chicken and I’m really upset about it as a Christian woman. All we wanted was some good fried chicken so now we’re gonna go to Cane’s, we’re going to try it out.”
READ MORE: Classified Pentagon ‘War Plans’ Document Trump Bragged About in Audio Recording Is Missing: Report
Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers is a Louisiana-based fast food restaurant with 600 locations in the U.S. and Western Asia.
“This is really difficult because there’s a Chick-fil-A is across the street. Now eating chicken fingers instead of chicken nuggets. I know, first world Christian woman problems, but no one will ever understand the love that I had for Chick-fil-A.”
“You know, we’re taking this boycott Chick-fil-A thing seriously, and it’s really difficult.”
The video was posted to Twitter by the anonymous group PatriotTakes, which has been described as a liberal political action committee. It quickly went viral, garnering over 2 million views in just eight hours. Late Friday afternoon Morgonn tweeted, “sarcasm and satire are things the left doesn’t seem to understand.”
For those who don’t know, Turning Point USA, a far-right Christian nationalist organization, was founded by the ultra-MAGA Charlie Kirk, now a member of the highly-secretive Council for National Policy.
CNP’s membership list also includes former Trump attorney, ally, and advisor Cleta Mitchell, and Ginni Thomas.
“CNP members range from the leaders of the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society, to the Southern Poverty Law Center designated anti-LGBTQ hate groups Family Research Council and Alliance Defending Freedom,” Documented reported last year.
Turning Point USA was in the news last week after Rolling Stone reported: “Charlie Kirk’s TPUSA Teamed Up With a Registered Sex Offender.”
Meanwhile, over at TPUSA, Morgonn McMichael’s bio says she is “a Gen Z social media influencer from Texas whose effort to empower and inspire America’s next generation of young conservative female leaders through patriotic online video content has amassed over 100,000 unique social media impressions every week on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and more.”
READ MORE: ‘I Don’t Want Reality’: Senate Republican Explodes Over Origin of Concept of Race – Calls to Teach ‘Jesus Loves Me’ Instead
“Morgonn has dedicated the last year promoting freedom of speech, religious liberty, personal responsibility, and limited government both online and across TPUSA campus chapters. Morgonn has also reached tens of thousands of viewers of all ages with her articles and appearances on Newsmax, Real America’s Voice, OAN, and Breitbart, offering insightful cultural commentary into the most pressing issues concerning young conservatives today.”
Apparently, Chick-fil-A’s diversity officer (more on that next) is one of “the most pressing issues concerning young conservatives today.”
Morgonn did claim Chick-fil-A “decided to hire a diversity, equity and inclusion” officer.
Well, stunningly, the company – long known for its hate-filled attacks on same-sex marriage – did, over a year ago.
A USA Today fact check found Chick-fil-A hired Erick McReynolds, its vice president of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, more than a year and a half ago. The company even has a DEI page featuring him on its corporate website.
PatriotTakes also tweeted, “TPUSA Contributor Morgonn, who is now calling for a boycott of Chick-fil-a, previously said, Cancel culture is toxic’ and ‘needs to be canceled.'”
As some social media users pointed out, Cane’s Chicken Fingers is very pro-LGBTQ.
READ MORE: Decision to Not Charge Pence in Classified Docs Probe Is ‘Prelude to DOJ Seeking Charges Against Trump’: Legal Expert
“Since its inception in the early 2000s, Raising Cane’s has been a strong supporter of the LGBT community,” San Diego Gay & Lesbian News (SDGLN) reported in November. “The chicken chain was one of the first companies to offer domestic partner benefits to its employees and has been a vocal advocate for LGBT rights. In 2015, Raising Cane’s was named one of the best places to work for LGBT Equality by the Human Rights Campaign.”
In response to Morgonn’s video, Mississippi Free Press editor Ashton Pittman posted this screenshot from a Raising Cane’s tweet:
Does she know? https://t.co/JWFCMZmdYB pic.twitter.com/sjyvvKRMPL
— Ashton Pittman 🏳️🌈 (@ashtonpittman) June 2, 2023
Over at TPUSA, Morgonn has written content including a piece titled, “Disney’s Male Employee in a Dress Sparks Outrage,” that begins, “At Disney, anyone can be a princess — even a grown man.”
Also, “Disney in Decline: Company Loses Billions Due to Woke Agenda.”
Noted actor and activist George Takei weighed in, tweeting simply, “They’ve lost their goddamned minds.”
Watch Morgonn below or at this link.
A TPUSA Contributor learned Chick-Fil-A has a diversity, equity and inclusion officer:
“Chick-Fil-A you are no longer the Lord’s chicken. You’re actually the woke chicken and I’m really upset about it as a Christian woman.…We’re taking this boycott Chick-Fil-A thing seriously.” pic.twitter.com/oFMCSeR2ie
— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) June 2, 2023
Watch Live: President Biden to Deliver Rare Address to the Nation on Bipartisan Debt Ceiling Agreement
President Joe Biden will make a rare address to the nation Friday evening, to share with the American people the results of successful negotiations with Republicans to avert what could have been not only a national but global economic disaster had the debt ceiling crisis not been averted.
Biden is being credited for smart and savvy negotiations while keeping out of the public eye and allowing Republicans to control the narrative, while steering the agreement to one best for the American people.
Even Speaker Kevin McCarthy “conceded that he had been impressed with Biden’s negotiating team during the talks, calling them ‘very professional, very smart’ and ‘very tough at the same time,'” HuffPost reported Wednesday.
Many extremist House Republicans were hoping for a default, and over the past several weeks they made clear they did not understand what the consequences would have been.
RELATED: ‘Objectively Amazing’: Economists Cheer ‘Extraordinarily Robust’ and ‘Close to Unprecedented’ Jobs Report
Watch President Biden below at 7 PM ET, or at this link.
RELATED: ‘Republicans Got Outsmarted by a President Who Can’t Find His Pants’: GOP Congresswoman Throws Debt Ceiling Tantrum
- News3 days ago
‘Barking’: DeSantis Mocked as His Crew Races to Protect Him From Criticism After He Attacks Reporter
- News3 days ago
Grassley Admits He Doesn’t Care if GOP’s Accusations Against ‘Vice President Biden’ Are True or Not – He Vows to Pursue Them
- COMMENTARY3 days ago
Evangelical Pastor With Ties to DeSantis Denies He’s Endorsing Biblical Call for Death to Gays
- RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM3 days ago
MAGA Christian Nationalist Plans to Mobilize GOP Voters in 17 Counties ‘Where Demonic Strongholds Have Corrupt Control’
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM2 days ago
‘No Longer the Lord’s Chicken’: ‘Christian Woman’ Says She’s ‘Grieving’ Over ‘Woke’ Chick-fil-A Hiring a Diversity Officer
- CRIME3 days ago
Former DOJ Official Says Audio of Trump Admitting to Keeping ‘War Plans’ Makes it ‘Inconceivable’ He Will Not Be Charged
- News2 days ago
‘Objectively Amazing’: Economists Cheer ‘Extraordinarily Robust’ and ‘Close to Unprecedented’ Jobs Report
- News2 days ago
Decision to Not Charge Pence in Classified Docs Probe Is ‘Prelude to DOJ Seeking Charges Against Trump’: Legal Expert