Jared Polis becomes first gay man elected governor in United States

Jared Polis Colorado Governor

Rep.Jared Polis has defeated his Republican opponent by a strong margin and won the Colorado gubernatorial race, becoming the first openly gay person elected governor in the United States, according to unofficial results. Photo: Office of Rep. Jared Solis.

Jared Polis has defeated his Republican opponent by a strong margin and won the Colorado gubernatorial race, becoming the first openly gay person elected governor in the United States, according to unofficial results.

Polis won about 51 percent of the vote, compared to Walker Stapleton, with 70 percent of the vote reported.

Polis will succeed Democrat John Hickenlooper, who’s been governor since 2011

Former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey, a Democrat, came out as gay while in office in 2004. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, also a Democrat, is openly bisexual, which made her the first openly LGBTQ person elected governor when she won in 2016.

Polis, a Democrat who has served in the House of Representatives since 2009, didn’t hide his sexual orientation on the campaign trail.

Polis, who ran on a progressive platform, vowed to fight for Medicare-for-all. He also backed stronger gun laws, investments in renewable energy, repeal of the death penalty, universal full-day preschool and kindergarten as an extension of Colorado’s public schools, and expanded broadband access.

Phillip Zonkel can be reached at phillip.zonkel@qvoicenews.com or 562-294-5996.

 

About the author

Phillip Zonkel

Award-winning journalist Phillip Zonkel spent 17 years at Long Beach's Press-Telegram, where he was the first reporter in the paper's history to have a beat covering the city's vibrant LGBTQ. He also created and ran the popular and innovative LGBTQ news blog, Out in the 562.

He won two awards and received a nomination for his reporting on the local LGBTQ community, including a two-part investigation that exposed anti-gay bullying of local high school students and the school districts' failure to implement state mandated protections for LGBTQ students.

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