This City Will Soon Be Represented By A 100% LGBTQ Council

Photographed by Stephanie Gonot.

The city of Palm Springs in California is taking representation in politics to the next level: For the first time, the city council will be entirely LGBTQ. This is because during Tuesday's election, Palm Springs elected a transgender woman and millennial woman who identifies as bisexual to the council. Lisa Middleton and Christy Holstege will join two openly gay council members and the city's openly gay mayor.

"With the election of Lisa [Middleton] and Christy Holstege, the city of Palm Springs will now be represented by a city council that is 100% LGBTQ," Equality California executive director Rick Zbur said in a statement on Tuesday night. "At Equality California, we know that representation matters. That’s why we endorse and work to elect highly qualified LGBTQ candidates at the local level."

Middleton was one of several trans candidates who made history on Election Day. On Tuesday, she became the first transgender person to be elected to a non-judicial office in California. (In 2010, Victoria Kolakowski, another transgender woman, broke the glass ceiling when she was elected as an Alameda County Superior Court judge.) Meanwhile, Holstege is the first millennial to be elected to the Palm Springs City Council.

At the end of the day, it's no surprise that the people of Palm Springs were open to electing such diverse candidates: Former mayor Ron Oden once estimated that about a third of the city's population identifies as LGBTQ and Palm Springs got a 100 scorecard on the Human Rights Campaign's 2017 Municipal Equality Index.

Across the country, several other LGBTQ candidates had historic wins, including Danica Roem, who by winning a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates became the first openly transgender person to be elected to any state legislature in the nation, and Jenny Durkan, an openly lesbian candidate and the first woman to be elected as the mayor of the city of Seattle in 91 years.

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