2012 a Historic Year for Bisexual and Transgender People in Politics

There’s no doubt about it–this November we witnessed many monumental victories for the LGBT community.

Nationally, we celebrated when Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) became the first out senator, and when Mark Takano of Riverside, California, became the first openly LGBT person of color in Congress.

There were also several victories among bisexual and transgender candidates. Last week on November 12, Kyrsten Sinema was called the winner for Arizona’s 9th Congressional District, making her the first openly bisexual candidate in history elected to Congress.

Four openly bisexual candidates ran for reelection to their offices across the country: Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown, South Dakota State Senator Angie Buhl, New York State Representative Micah Kellner, and Wisconsin State Representative JoCasta Zamarripa. This marks victories for all five openly bisexual officials who ran for office in the 2012 election.

Earlier this year, Mary Gonzalez of El Paso, Texas, made history when she became the first openly LGBT woman in the Texas state legislature, as well as the first openly pansexual elected official in the United States. Pansexuality is a sexual orientation describing attraction to people of all genders, or attraction regardless of gender. Gonzalez ran unopposed after winning the Democratic primary for her district, guaranteeing her victory this November.


Two transgender candidates also won their races this election. Stu Rasmussen of Silverton, Oregon, made history in 2008 as the country’s first openly transgender mayor, and won his race for re-election. He will now serve a fifth term as mayor of the small city.

Across the country in New Hampshire, Stacie Laughton won her race for the House of Representatives and became the first openly transgender person elected to a state legislature in the country.