Victory for HRC-Backed Candidates in Historic Michigan Election

by Elliott Kozuch

Washington -- Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization, released the following statement on the victories of pro-equality candidates: U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow; U.S. Representatives Dan Kildee (MI-5); Haley Stevens (MI-11); Debbie Dingell (MI-12); and Brenda Lawrence (MI-14); Governor-elect Gretchen Whitmer.


“Tonight, Michigan rejected the Trump-Pence administration’s politics of bigotry and fear and instead elected bold pro-equality champion Senator Debbie Stabenow,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “We also celebrate the victories of equality champions Governor-elect Gretchen Whitmer and Congress members-elect Kildee, Stevens, Dingell and Lawrence. For more than a year, HRC has worked to mobilize 1.1 million equality voters across the state and we are proud to have helped these candidates and others across the finish line. Tonight we celebrate this incredible moment and tomorrow we look forward to rolling up our sleeves and getting to work with Michigan’s pro-equality champions to move equality forward for all Michiganders.”


HRC has prioritized investments and organizing in Michigan for more than a year, and had seven staff on the ground in the state as part of the largest grassroots expansion in the organization’s 38-year history. In 2018, HRC members and supporters completed 736 volunteer shifts. In the final four days of GOTV alone, our staff and volunteers knocked on over 2,600 doors. Member and supporter volunteers sent nearly 6,000 text messages in the final weeks. Since launching, we've helped register 1,500 Michiganders to vote by mail, online, and in-person.


HRC hosted seven Equality Action Academy trainings to give HRC members and supporters the tools they need to take action locally in legislative advocacy and in support of pro-equality candidate campaigns. Working with scores of partner organizations, HRC also led field organizing efforts around the state to mobilize voters in support of HRC-backed, pro-equality champions including Senator Stabenow, Governor-elect Whitmer, Representatives-elect Slotkin and Stevens, and others who will fight for LGBTQ rights, and for the rights and welfare of all Michiganders.



In the U.S. Senate race, Stabenow, a longtime supporter of LGBTQ equality, defeated anti-LGBTQ candidate John James. Stabenow supported marriage equality, the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,’ the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, and the Safe Schools Improvement Act, which would require districts to adopt codes of conduct prohibiting bullying and harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, and religion. Stabenow is also a co-sponsor of the Equality Act, a crucial federal legislation that would finally guarantee explicit, comprehensive protections for LGBTQ people under the nation’s civil rights laws.




The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work, and in every community.




Paid for by Human Rights Campaign PAC ( and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee

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