One Year

I was feeling all kinds of down earlier this week with it being the one year anniversary of the presidential election, but then, something WONDERFUL HAPPENED. These fine folks were elected:

Ravi Bhalla because New Jersey’s first Sikh mayor.

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Elizabeth Guzmรกn and Hala Ayala became the first Latinas elected to the Virginia House of Delegates.

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Kathy Tran is the first Asian-American woman to be elected to the Virginia House of Delegates.

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Bob Marshall – who introduced the “bathroom bill” in Virginia – was defeated by Danica Roem, the first openly trangender state representative in the country.

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Andrea Jenkins became the first openly trangender black woman to be elected to a public office in this country.

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Zachary DeWolf is the Seattle’s first openly gay school board member.

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Charlotte, N.C. elected their first female African American mayor, Vi Lyles.

Vi Lyles, Charlotte's Democratic mayor pro tem, listens to the applause of supporters with her granddaughter following her victory on Tuesday.

Jenny Durkan became the first lesbian mayor elected in Seattle.

Seattle mayoral candidate Jenny Durkan smiles as she addresses supporters at an election night party Tuesday in Seattle.

Melvin Carter III will be St. Paul’s first mayor of color.

St. Paul mayoral candidate Melvin Carter III celebrates his win with family and friends on Tuesday in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Michelle Kaufusi will be the first woman to be mayor of Provo, Utah.

Michelle Kaufusi will be the first woman on Provo's wall of mayors.

In 2015, Alison Parker was murdered during a live TV broadcast. This week, her boyfriend, Chris Hurst, won the race for Virginia’s House of Delegates. He supports stricter gun safety measures, expansion of medicaid, and increased funding for schools. I cannot imagine a better way to honor her memory than to run for office and fight for change.

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Several of these people broke through these barriers despite nasty racist fliers that were distributed in their communities. Diversity and inclusion are what make us stronger and better, and these wins give me such hope for the future of this country. For me, it’s not about Democrats or Republicans, but representation and diversity in the voices at the table. I am disappointed to see that the Governor of Maine is still standing by his commitment to veto Medicare expansion despite majority approval by Maine voters. That expansion would help 70,000 people in Maine. Nothing has changed at the top over the past year and I don’t anticipate that it will, but you have to have this kind of broad representation in the pipeline before they can even impact the higher levels of government. The fight for inclusion and representation is far from over, but this is progress.

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27 thoughts on “One Year

  1. All of these wins definitely gave me hope!

    And my favorite thing of all was Danica Roem’s response when asked about her opponent Bob Marshall: โ€œI don’t attack my constituents. Bob is my constituent now.โ€

    • That will forever be one of the classiest and most brilliant political lines of all time. It’s so professional, yet conveys who is in charge now. I can’t wait to watch her.

  2. All of these wins make me fist pump but Chris Hurst man. I can’t read about that one without a lump in my throat. He is a very special type of person to keep getting up and moving forward after what happened and to become a public servant on top of that. Wooo it’s getting damp in here.

    • I remember reading about her murder when it happened and it was just unbelievable. She seemed like a total ray of light and a truly lovely person, and they looked very happy. He’s a courageous person and I have so much admiration for his efforts since her death.

  3. All the feels this week! The feeling of hopelessness and despair that I have had for the last year was lifted just a little bit this week. I’m not crying.

  4. I was so happy and relieved to see all the changes in the various states and just really have a lot of hope that we’ll see more in 2018 because Lord knows we need it!

  5. So proud to be a Minnesotan. I was THRILLED to see Andrea Jenkins and and Melvin Carter III win.

    I was also thrilled to see that voter turnout was so much higher than expected in some places that they had to order additional ballots.

    And to anyone who thinks “one vote doesn’t matter” — here is how the Virginia House of Delegates 40 vote turned out:

    Tanner (D) – 15,071 (50.1%)
    Hugo (R – Incumbent) – 15,003 (49.9%)

    69 people made that determination. Every vote matters.

    This election made me very hopeful for midterms in 2018.

    • That is truly incredible. I HATE that people can’t be bothered to vote. I was reading an analysis of the Virginia elections about how showed up and who stayed home. Makes all the difference in the world.

      • One of the schools in my area lost their referendum. There are 54,000 people in that city and only 9,000 showed up to vote for the referendum. How shameful is that? All of the surrounding towns had theirs pass.

        • That must be devastating! It’s hard for me to figure out if people are just lazy or if they are so insulated in their bubble of privilege that it truly doesn’t matter what happens because they will probably always be just fine. RAGE.

  6. Thank you for this! This election has given me so much hope and I’m so proud to live in Seattle where we finally have a woman mayor again. I wasn’t an activist until last January when I discovered Jenn Hoffman’s lists:

    The results of this election have added fuel to my resistance fire and I’m going to continue to advocate for change. Thank you for reminding us that there is hope.

    • I just keep thinking of how much more effective we could be if our party would stop all of this petty infighting. Republicans too. Let’s make goals that help this country and freaking move forward together. We all lose when we play like this. Keep resisting!

      • PS- I read “Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? And Other Questions You Should Have Answers to When You Work in the White House” by Alyssa Mastromonaco and Lauren Oyler and I think you’ll like it!

  7. So proud to be living in Hoboken, especially this week! And hoorays all around for diversity!! A little bit of light during some dark days.

  8. I have never been prouder to live in Prince William County, VA. We have such a diverse group representing us now, I can barely contain myself. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    • It’s beautiful!!! THIS is the real America. Not that neo-Nazi alt right bullshit.

  9. PS- I read “Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? And Other Questions You Should Have Answers to When You Work in the White House” by Alyssa Mastromonaco and Lauren Oyler and I think you’ll like it!

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