The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) celebrated Mayor Tom Barrett's re-election and Assemblywoman JoCasta Zamarripa's historic win in her race for Milwaukee alderwoman as well as Judge Jill Karofsky's victory in the Wisconsin spring election for state Supreme Court.
"Despite efforts to limit turnout, Milwaukee has made history," said HRC President Alphonso David in a statement. "The city re-elected a strongly pro-equality mayor in Tom Barrett and elected its first LGBTQ member of the Common Council. Throughout his tenure, Mayor Barrett has prioritized inclusiveness and equality, and Assemblywoman Zamarripa has been one of Wisconsin's fiercest advocates for LGBTQ people and communities of color in the state legislature."
Wisconsin went on with its primary election as scheduled despite Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' executive order to postpone the April 7 election until June amid the coronavirus pandemic. Republicans appealed the order to the state supreme court, which ruled four to two, along party lines, to block Evers' order.
According to HRC, Barrett has made Milwaukee one of the most LGBTQ inclusive cities nationwide. In 2018, for the first time, Milwaukee earned a top score on HRC's Municipal Equality Index and earned that top score again in 2019.
Upon her inauguration, Zamarripawho has represented the 8th District in the Wisconsin State Assembly since 2010will become the first openly LGBTQ member of the Milwaukee Common Council, having coming out as bisexual in 2012.
Karofskywho has said she would seek to preserve the rights of crime victims, women, racial minorities and LGBT indvidualsdefeated Daniel Kelly in the general election. She is the daughter of Peter Karofsky, a local pediatrician, and former Middleton Mayor Judy Karofsky, one of the first women in Wisconsin to serve as mayor.