Woman becomes first transgender elected official in Virginia
An American Democrat made history on Tuesday by becoming Virginia’s ,and possibly the nation’s first openly transgender state delegate, winning her bid for a seat in the legislature.
In a campaign that garnered national attention, musician and former journalist Danica Roem, 33, prevailed in her race against Republican Robert Marshall, who has served as a delegate for a quarter century and once referred to himself as Virginia’s “chief homophobe.”
With 95 percent of the vote counted, Roem was leading with 55 percent of the vote against Marshall’s 45 percent.
The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund described Roem as the only out transgender person in US history to win a seat in a state legislature.
“Tonight voters chose a smart, solutions-oriented trans leader over a divisive anti-LGBTQ demagogue, sending a powerful message to anti-trans legislators all across the nation,” Victory Fund president Aisha Moodie-Mills said in a statement.
Roem will now serve two years in the House of Delegates in Richmond, where Democrats gained several seats Tuesday and appeared close to seizing control of the legislature from Republicans.