Danica Roem Becomes First Trans State Legislator in Virginia

Violet Powell
November 9, 2017

Marshall had been at odds with LGBT issues and had proposed a state bill in 2015 that would allow anyone who has a license with the state to refuse services to gay people and earlier this year introduced a bill to restrict transgender people's access to public restrooms, CNN local affiliates reported.

"This is what happens when the radical transgender lobby pours more than $600,000 into a small state race and conservative donors largely sit the race out - Democrats cruise to victory and claim a mandate on an issue they were too afraid to outwardly campaign on", said Terry Schilling, executive director at the Washington-based American Principles Project, which donated money to Marshall and orchestrated a telephone poll aimed at shoring up his supporters late in the race. "This is what happens when he can't defeat me [on] the core quality-of-life issues facing the people of the 13th District".

Roem, who couldn't immediately be reached for an interview Tuesday night, openly discussed her gender identity during her campaign, but it was far from her focus. Roem, who is openly transgender (and plays in a metal band), ran against Bob Marshall, a Republican incumbent who infamously billed himself as the commonwealth's "chief homophobe".

"For 26 years I've been proud to fight for you, and fight for our future".

In her bio on the campaign website, Roem stated that she learned to listen to different perspectives and digest complicated policy as a reporter for the Gainesville Times and Prince William Times. "We don't just want a seat at the table, we want to set the table".

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When asked about Marshall after her victory, Roem said that "I don't attack my constituents".

Marshall conceded to Roem in a post on his Facebook page. Victory Fund, a group that advocates for LGBTQ candidates, said Jenkins is the first openly transgender woman elected to the city council of a major US city.

Roem's victory still came as a surprise to many, though she won by almost 10 percent.

Tuesday's election not only brought Democratic wins in high-profile gubernatorial races in Virginia and New Jersey, but it also saw historic victories for women, minority and LGBTQ candidates in down-ballot races nationwide.

One pf the biggest reasons Roem ran is what some commuters describe as a terrible commute along Route 28. I never ran away from them. She won more than 70% of the votes, the newspaper reported.

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