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NATIONAL Don Lemon, Kan. governor, LGBT electoral wins
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-11-13

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Don Lemon took President Donald Trump to task for the president's thoughts about the migrant caravan traveling through Mexico, The Huffington Post reported. The CNN Tonight host suggested Trump should have instead been focused on tackling "homegrown killers," such as the gunman who killed 12 people after bursting into the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, California.

Kansas governor-elect Laura Kelly ( D ) said she plans to reinstate an executive order that issues protections for LGBT state employee, The Hill reported. Kelly became the first Democrat to be elected Kansas governor since 2009 on Tuesday after defeating Secretary of State Kris Kobach ( R ). The executive order she plans to reinstate for LGBT state employees was first put in place by Gov. Kathleen Sebelius ( D ) in 2007; however, the action was rescinded in 2015 by Republican Gov. Sam Brownback.

Among the many LGBTQA political victories on Nov. 6, involved Zach Wahls' win in the Iowa state Senate, The Huffington Post noted. Seven years ago, Wahls, now 27, stood before the Iowa House of Representatives and delivered a stirring speech defending his two lesbian mothers. Wahls, a Democrat, clinched 78 percent of the vote in Iowa Senate District 37; he will succeed Sen. Bob Dvorsky ( D ), who is retiring after more than 30 years.

Also, Malcolm Kenyatta 27, won the 181st District of Pennsylvania in the state's house—becoming the first Black gay man elected to statewide office in Pennsylvania, Gay Star News noted. He is the second openly gay representative, joining fellow Democrat Brian Sims. Sims has been in office since 2012 and was re-elected Nov. 6, 2018.

In addition, the U.S. island territory of Guam has elected its first openly gay lieutenant governor, Joshua Tenorio, according to the Victory Fund's website. Tenorio has experience in leadership positions across all three branches of government and most recently served as administrator of the courts for the Judiciary of Guam. The territory also elected its first female governor, Lou Leon Guerrero, PostGuam.com noted.

Teri Johnston Florida history as the first openly lesbian elected mayor in a major Florida city ( Key West ), The Miami Herald noted. Johnston said that fact isn't stunning news in Key West, her home of 20 years and the laid-back, progressive city that had an openly gay mayor, Richard Heyman, in the 1980s—one of the first in the country. Johnston won Nov. 6 with 66 percent of the vote.

A lesbian candidate running for a U.S. House seat in Minnesota has unseated an anti-LGBT lawmaker from the U.S. House—positioning her to become the first openly gay mother in Congress, The Washington Blade noted. Major media outlets declared Angie Craig, a business executive who's also mother, the winner in her bid to unseat anti-LGBT Rep. Jason Lewis ( R-Minnesota ) and represent Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District. In 2013, Lewis said gay rights activists were "shredding the Constitution," and that same-sex parents "could harm the kid."

Is the man who defeated anti-gay Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in the Nov. 6 election not what he seems to be? According to the Courier-Journal.com, in a four-person Democratic primary earlier this year, Elwood Caudill Jr. ( who switched from the GOP to the Democratic Party in 2015 ) soundly defeated David Ermold—a man whose marriage license Davis refused to sign in 2015. "I just want him to lose. I would rather Kim Davis win," Ermold told the AP in September. "At least Kim Davis has the integrity to stand up for what she believes in. Elwood Caudill is a liar."

Openly gay candidate Dave "Hutch" Hutchinson defeated pro-Trump, anti-immigrant three-time incumbent Rich Stanek to be elected sheriff of Hennepin County, Minnesota, in a stunning upset, Towleroad noted. The HuffPost reported, "Hutchinson's campaign had adopted a progressive approach to race, focusing on increasing transparency within Minnesota's law enforcement and embracing immigrant communities throughout the state."

Gay former Marine Neil Rafferty won his race for the state House seat in Alabama's District 54, Instinct Magazine noted, citing AL.com . Rafferty bested his opponent, independent Joseph Casper Baker III, by garnering 90 percent of the vote. The win makes Rafferty the first openly gay man elected to the Alabama legislature. For more than a decade, he seat had been held by openly LGBT Rep. Patricia Todd, who chose to retire this year.

In Ohio, Shawnee State University philosophy professor Nicholas Meriwether is suing his workplace over his opposition to a policy that requires him to refer to students by their preferred pronouns, PinkNews noted. Meriwether, an evangelical Christian, filed a lawsuit Nov. 5, arguing that the institute has violated his First Amendment rights. Student Alena Bruening filed a complaint against the Meriwether earlier this year after he objected to calling her "miss" or "she"; he instead offered to refer to Bruening by her first name.

A Florida city is now entirely run by LGBTI people, Gay Star News noted. Wilton Manors, near Fort Lauderdale, has a local government made entirely out of gay, bi and trans people. Scott Newton, the last straight commissioner, lost his re-election bid in the U.S midterm elections, and Justin Flippen, who is gay, is the mayor.

On Nov. 2, U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch ( D-22 ) reintroduced the Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual, Transgender ( LGBT ) Elder Americans Act—named after Jewish lesbian couple Ruthie Berman and Connie Kurtz of West Palm Beach—to Congress, the SunSentinel reported. Deutch noted that the Ruthie and Connie LGBT Elder Americans Act is named in recognition of the battle by Berman and Kurtz for LGBT equal rights for close to 30 years. Berman and Kurtz became known for their battle for LGBT rights in 1988 when they sued the New York City Board of Education for domestic-partner benefits.

Planned Parenthood issued a statement showing its support of the transgender community. Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Dr. Leana Wen said, in part, "Transgender and gender non-conforming people are our patients, our staff, and our supporters—these communities are a part of the Planned Parenthood family and they won't be erased. We know that when people are truly cared for, they make their lives, their families, and their communities better and healthier."

The fashion brand Diesel is selling a jacket that has the word "faggot" written all over it, LGBTQ Nation noted. For about $450, people can buy a jacket made from "shiny technical satin" that has hate speech all over it. The jacket is part of Diesel's "Ha( u )te Couture" line, which includes several garments with negative comments about Diesel written on them, like "Diesel is dead" and "Not cool anymore."

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg fractured three ribs after falling in her Supreme Court office, CNN.com reported. Ginsburg, 85, experienced discomfort after going home following the fall and was admitted to George Washington University for observation and treatment. She is now out of the hospital.

All 19 African-American women who ran for various judicial seats in Harris County, Texas, won their races last night—marking the single biggest victory for Black women in the county's history, Yahoo! News reported. Many are highlighting this win as a bright spot amid Democrat Beto O'Rourke's loss to Republican incumbent Ted Cruz in the U.S. Senate race in the state. The victory of the #Houston19, as the group of women are called, has local impact: Harris County, which encompasses most of Houston, is the third-largest county in the country—and one of the most diverse.

In an interview with the Daily Beast, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders appeared to have placed part of the blame for Andrew Gillum's and Stacey Abrams' possible losses on the fact that neither state had ever elected an African-American governor, NPR noted. However, Sanders' spokesman insists those remarks were taken out of context. Speaking with NPR, Sanders said any votes Gillum or Abrams lost over their race were entirely due to what he called "racist" campaigns run by their Republican opponents.

Stormy Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti, posted a video to his Twitter page alleging far-right pundit Tucker Carlson and his son assaulted "a gay Latino immigrant" in a Virginia country club, LGBTQ Nation reported. Carlson and Fox News have fired back, saying the man was the aggressor, but the alleged victim, Juan Manuel Granados, has stepped forward—with witnesses.

An Arkansas man was arrested after allegedly making more than 40 harassing phone calls to CNN, including death threats against at least one CNN journalist, Deadline reported. Benjamin Craig Matthews, 39, of Mountain Home, Arkansas, was arrested on five felony counts of terroristic threatening, nine misdemeanor counts of harassing communications and four misdemeanor counts of second-degree terroristic threatening.

A federal judge ordered both the Trump administration and TransCanada to stop any work on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, saying President Trump's approval of the project last year violated several key environmental and administrative laws by ignoring facts about climate change, Politico reported. Judge Brian Morris, of the U.S. District Court for Montana, ruled that the Trump administration almost completely ignored climate change in its analysis supporting the pipeline's construction—a shift that illegally reversed the Obama administration's 2015 decision rejecting the pipeline's cross-border permit.


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