A year ago this week, US voters elected to the presidency Donald Trump, a man who has trafficked in white nationalism and other forms of bigotry. And they did it with the help of an Electoral College that traces its roots back to the defense of slavery.
But a dramatic political swing like that — from the first African-American president to one who writer Ta-Nehisi Coates has called America’s “first white president” — often results in the pendulum swinging hard in the other direction.
And that’s what we witnessed in this week’s off-year election, with a wave of wins for progressives in state and local races across the nation. That wave also brought historic victories for people of color and LGBT candidates across the South.
Here are some of the candidates whose wins this week will go down in the history books:
Adams became the first out lesbian elected to the Virginia House of Delegates. A political newcomer from Richmond, the Democrat defeated five-term GOP incumbent George M. “Manoli” Loupassi and has pledged to prioritize the issues she heard about from voters while canvassing: economic growth, education, health care, and protecting the environment. Her win was part of a blue wave that’s put control of the chamber, which currently has a 66-44 GOP majority, up in the air.
Hala Ayala and Elizabeth Guzman
Ayala and Guzman, both Democrats from Virginia’s Prince William County, became the first Latinas ever elected to the state’s House of Delegates.
A women’s rights advocate, Ayala is the former president of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization …read more