Despite the pushback on transgender rights under President Trump’s administration, several transgender political candidates pulled out a win on Tuesday, Nov. 7.
At least five transgender candidates won their specific campaigns, with one winning a distinguished governorship in Virginia against 13-time elected delegate Robert G. Marshall.
Danica Roem will be welcomed to the Virginia House of Delegates as one of the country’s first openly transgender elected officials. Roem led by almost nine percentage points after all data from precincts were recorded, beating out Marshall by 54 percent of the votes. She focused her campaign on local issues within her specified county, as well as by calling attention to the issues our nation faces with gender identity.
“It’s great to see people voting for whoever they believe would best fit the role rather than what’s going on in the candidate’s personal life,” said junior finance major Ryan Coenen.
Within Trump’s first year of presidency, Americans have seen many rights for transgender people questioned or attempted to be rescinded, such as protections for transgender students over bathroom usage and the right for transgender people to serve in the military.
Roem described her win as a “powerful message” to anti-trans legislators around the nation.
“I think as long as those officials have the correct credentials and are able to uphold those positions in office, they should have no political pushback whatsoever. However, I think it’s important to put aside their opinions on gender and start to implement their agenda,” said senior aviation flight management major Pat McCloskey.
Other winning candidates, such as Lisa Middleton of California and Tyler Titus of Pennsylvania, became their state’s first openly transgender elected officials.
“Yesterday, Americans took to the polls and chose optimism, hope and new leadership,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD media, in an interview with USA Today.
President Trump has yet to comment on the recent victories for the newly elected officials; however, the votes can speak for themselves as an indication of the growing acceptance for all people.