Today, HRC announced the endorsement of U.S. Rep. Colin Allred and Texas State Rep. Julie Johnson.
Allred has been a devoted ally of LGBTQ progress in Congress, voting in favor of the Equality Act and every pro-LGBTQ piece of legislation in the 116th Congress. Allred’s endorsement marks HRC’s first Congressional endorsement of the 2020 election cycle. Johnson was instrumental in defeating anti-LGBTQ legislation in Texas, and improving bills that would’ve had broad, discriminatory impact on millions of Texans. She is also a member of the Texas State House’s first-ever LGBTQ Caucus.
“From his work as a civil rights attorney to helping pass the Equality Act, U.S Representative Colin Allred has been a strong ally and a steadfast supporter of LGBTQ Texans,” said HRC President Alphonso David.“Congressman Allred is the type of leader we need in Washington: passionate, committed and focused on improving the lives of his constituents. We look forward to helping him return to Congress so we can continue this work, together.”
“Texas State Representative Julie Johnson has been a change-maker since joining the Texas House in 2018, and we know she will continue to fight fiercely for her fellow LGBTQ Texans once reelected,” said HRC President Alphonso David. “In order to make positive change for our community, the Human Rights Campaign must work at every level of government to defeat anti-LGBTQ legislation and pass pro-equality legislation. We have a lot of work to do to make Texas a fairer and more equal place, and we’re glad to take the fight to the statehouse in Austin and join Rep. Johnson in making that happen.”
In 2018, HRC deployed staff on the ground across the state to help elect Allred, Johnson and other pro-equality candidates across Texas. Allred has a long history of support for the LGBTQ community. During the 2017 legislative session in Texas, Allred was an outspoken critic of the anti-transgender legislation SB6, which was eventually defeated. Allred, a former NFL player, signed onto a letter opposing the legislation, authored by Athlete Ally. He is a civil rights attorney and a North Texas native.
Rep. Julie Johnson has been a change-maker while in office. Heading into the 2019 session, there were 23 anti-LGBTQ bills filed, yet with the leadership of Johnson and the LGBTQ Caucus, the Texas legislative session concluded with only one anti-LGBTQ bill being passed into law. SB 1978 was originally filed as a broad, sweeping anti-LGBTQ bill. However, after concerns raised by the LGBTQ Caucus and Rep. Johnson specifically, significant changes were made to the bill. Texas Monthly named Julie “Freshman of the year” due to her effort on this bill. The caucus was started by five women in the House. Several of the members identify as openly LGBTQ and were honored by HRC at the National Conference for State Legislators in Nashville.
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