Let’s Talk About That Rainbow Wave!

LGBTQ candidates across the country won BIG!

Last week felt like an eternity! I don’t know about you but every day from Wednesday through Saturday just felt so overwhelmingly anxious. I’m certainly relived and I hope you are too!

Let’s take a moment to celebrate something extraordinary that happen with the 2020 Election as well. The Rainbow Wave that swept across the country!


Right here in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania! Jessica Benham is the first out LGBTQ+ woman elected to the Pennsylvania state legislature. The Democrat will represent PA House District 36 which includes parts of Pittsburgh’s South Side Slopes, Carrick and Brookline neighborhoods, as well as Baldwin, Brentwood and Mt. Oliver. Benham, who is bisexual and autistic, is the director and cofounder of Development for the Pittsburgh Center for Autistic Advocacy (PCAA), the only LGBTQ+ autistic-led advocacy group in the Pittsburgh area.

There are now just under 700 LGBTQ American Elected Officials


Alex Lee won his election in Assembly District 25, he is the state’s youngest Asian-American assembly member and the first out bi person elected to the assembly.


David Ortiz won his run for Colorado’s House of Representatives District 38, making him the state’s first bisexual legislator


Sarah McBride made history on Tuesday when she will become the United States’ highest-ranking transgender elected official and the first openly transgender person to serve in a state Senate anywhere in the nation.


Michele Rayner is the first Black queer woman to win a seat in the Florida legislature. She will represent District 70 in the State House.

Shevrin Jones is the state’s first out LGBTQ+ state senator. He will represent District 35 in the State Senate.  Jones will become one of the only two out Black men serving in U.S. state senates.


Kim Jackson became the first out member of Georgia’s State Senate. She will represent District 41.

Sam Park was reelected to the Georgia House, serving District 101. He is he first openly gay man and first Asian-American Democrat elected to the Georgia State Legislature.


Adrian Tam will represent District 22 in the House of Representatives making him Hawaii’s only openly LGBTQ elected official.


Stephanie Byers made history twice on election night, becoming Kansas’s first transgender elected official after winning her bid for the Kansas House of Representatives’ 86th District seat. And she is the first Indigenous trans person elected to any state legislature.


Voters chose to uphold a two-year-old state law protecting transgender people from discrimination in public places like bathrooms, locker rooms and hotels. 


Angie Craig won again in Minnesota’s Second Congressional District.

Mississippi and South Dakota have no LGBTQ elected officials.


Greg Razer was elected to the Senate in this deep-red state, becoming the only out LGBTQ+ representative in the chamber.


Nevada voters overturned an 18-year-old ban on same-sex marriage making it the first state in the nation to protect same-sex marriage in its constitution.

New Hampshire

Chris Pappaw won reelection to the U.S. House from New Hampshire.

New York

Mondaire Jones and Ritchie Torres have been elected the first Black LGBTQ+ members of Congress. Both are gay men. Jones, who won in New York’s 17th Congressional District. Ritchie Torres made history as one of the nation’s first Black LGBTQ+ congressmen, and he is also first Afro-Latinx gay congressman.

A third-generation Caribbean-American gay man Jabari Brisport will represent New York’s 25th district in the state Senate while making history as the state’s first LGBTQ+ legislator of color.


Charmaine McGuffey, a lesbian, will be the first woman and first LGBTQ+ person to hold the office of Sheriff of Hamilton County which includes Cincinnati.


Mauree Turner, who is Black, Muslim and identifies as non-binary, won a seat in the state House of Representatives for District 8.


Katherine Brown will serve as the nation’s first openly bisexual governor.

Rhode Island

Tiara Mack won the District 6 seat in the Rhode Island State Senate. She will be the the first Black LGBTQ+ person to serve in the state legislature. 


Torrey Harris won his race to represent District 90 in Tennessee’s State House; he will also become the first out LGBTQ+ member of the state legislature.

Eddie Mannis, a Republican, triumphed in his Knoxville district to become a Tennessee state representative.


Taylor Small is now Vermont’s first transgender legislator, winning a spot in the state’s House of Representatives.

QBurgh is your source for LGBTQ news and community resources in Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania. Be sure to subscribe to our weekly newsletter and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Want to write for us?