Post submitted by Brian McBride, former HRC Digital Strategist

As we mark the beginning of LGBTQ History Month, HRC is proud to honor openly LGBTQ candidates running to make history this November and the LGBTQ trailblazers who helped pave the way for them.

While millions of LGBTQ people across the nation are under attack from Donald Trump and Mike Pence, more than 400 openly LGBTQ candidates are taking a stand against the administration’s hateful and discriminatory policies and are running for public office at every level of government -- many for the first time.

Of course, LGBTQ candidates aren’t a new phenomenon. Harvey Milk made history in 1977 when he was elected to serve as a San Francisco City Supervisor, becoming one of the first openly LGBTQ elected officials in the country. Other pioneers include José Julio Sarria, who was the first openly gay candidate to run for public office in the U.S.

Today’s openly LGBTQ trailblazers include U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, who broke barriers in 2012 by becoming the first openly LGBTQ person elected to the U.S. Senate -- and the first woman Wisconsin voters sent to the Senate. HRC is proud to endorse Baldwin’s re-election bid. Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema was the first openly bisexual member elected to the U.S. House in 2012 and could become the nation’s first openly bi U.S. senator if she wins her bid in November.

Pro-equality candidates including Angie Craig, Chris Pappas, Gina Ortiz Jones, Lauren Baer, Rick Neal and Sharice Davids would each be their states' first openly LGBTQ representatives to serve in Congress.

Additionally, Christine Hallquist, Jared Polis and Lupe Valdez are making historic bids to become the nation’s first openly LGBTQ governors to serve in their respective states, and Kate Brown, the first openly bisexual person to be elected governor is seeking re-election.

LGBTQ candidates are also looking to make waves down ballot and in state legislatures nationwide.

Nelson Araujo could make history as Nevada’s first openly gay Latinx person elected to statewide office. Jeremy Moss would be the first openly gay member of the Michigan state senate. Nickie Antonio  -- the first out person elected to the Ohio state house -- would be the state’s first LGBTQ official elected to the senate. Malcolm Kenyatta, if elected, would become Pennsylvania’s first LGBTQ person of color to serve in the Keystone State’s legislature.  

In an historic wave of LGBTQ progress and trans visibility, eight openly transgender Americans were elected to office last November -- demonstrating the power of the millions of equality voters uniting to resist the Trump-Pence administration’s dangerous anti-LGBTQ agenda.

With so much at stake, join HRC in making sure these LGBTQ candidates are elected up and down the ballot this November. Take action today and help us turn out the vote and finally pull the emergency brake on the Trump-Pence administration once and for all.

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