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Elections 2020

Mondaire Jones & Ritchie Torres to Be First Black LGBTQ Members of Congress



Democrat Mondaire Jones is running to represent New York's 17th Congressional District. Photo credit: Mondaire Jones / Facebook

LGBTQ Victory Fund endorsed candidates Mondaire Jones (NY-17) and Ritchie Torres (NY-15) won their U.S. House races and will become the first two openly LGBTQ Black members of Congress when they take office in January. They will also be just the second and third openly LGBTQ men of color to serve in the U.S. Congress, the first being U.S. Representative Mark Takano.

Victory Fund was among the first national endorsements for Jones and Torres and both were made priority candidates for 2020.

Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund, released the following statements about their joint victories and individual victories.

Joint Mondaire Jones and Ritchie Torres Victory Statement

“Mondaire and Ritchie have shattered a rainbow ceiling and will bring unique perspectives based on lived experiences never before represented in the U.S. Congress. As our nation grapples with racism, police brutality and a pandemic that disproportionally affects people of color and LGBTQ people, these are the voices that can pull us from the brink and toward a more united and fair society. Their elections will end any doubts about the electability of Black LGBTQ men to our nation’s highest legislative body. It will also inspire more young LGBTQ leaders and leaders of color to run and serve.”

Mondaire Jones Victory Statement

“Mondaire’s victory is a milestone moment in our nation’s politics and his victory will inspire more people of color and LGBTQ people to run for office in their communities. Mondaire has been witness to the injustices faced by Black people, LGBTQ people and other marginalized communities and he ran for Congress to be in a position to address them. He will be a powerful voice for change and his impact will extend well beyond a single vote in the U.S. House.”

Ritchie Torres Victory Statement

“Most would have thought New York City’s first LGBTQ member of Congress would be from Chelsea or Greenwich Village or Hell’s Kitchen, but the Bronx beat them to it. As our nation attempts to tackle systemic racism, police reform and healthcare disparities, Ritchie’s lived experience as an out LGBTQ Afro-Latinx man will bring an essential perspective to Capitol Hill. Ritchie’s election gives hope at a time when many Americans desperately need it. He will become a role model for LGBTQ youth in the Bronx and beyond.”

Twenty-six openly LGBTQ candidates for U.S. Senate or U.S. House were on the November ballot this year – more than at any other time in U.S. history. Fifteen of the candidates were endorsed by Victory Fund. Currently there are seven openly LGBTQ members in the U.S. House and two openly LGBTQ U.S. Senators: Tammy Baldwin and Kyrsten Sinema.

Victory Fund works to achieve LGBTQ equality by recruiting, training and supporting openly LGBTQ candidates for public office around the country, giving our community a powerful voice in government.

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october 2021