All the Important LGBTQ Wins From the 2018 Midterm Elections

The 2018 midterm elections were a historic occasion. Democrats flipped the House of Representatives, women of color had unprecedented wins, and a number of LGBTQ candidates prevailed. Below, some of the most important LGBTQ victories you need to know about:

Kyrsten Sinema

Arizona Senate Candidates Attend Arizona State Football Game

Getty ImagesChristian Petersen

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After an extremely close election, Sinema officially won the Arizona senate race, replacing Sen. Jeff Flake and becoming the first female senator from Arizona and the first ever openly bisexual senator.

Sharice Davids

Kansas Congressional Candidate Sharice Davids Holds Rally In Overland Park, Kansas

Getty ImagesWhitney Curtis

Attorney and former MMA fighter, Sharice Davids unseated four-term Republican Representative Kevin Yoder to become the second openly lesbian member of Congress, the first openly LGBT person to represent Kansas, and one of America’s two first Native American congresswomen.

Angie Craig

Angie Craig...

Getty ImagesTom Williams

In Minnesota’s 2nd congressional district, Angie Craig became the state’s first LGBTQ congressperson. Craig beat Republican incumbent Jason Lewis, who, in 2013, said that same-sex parents “could harm the kid,” according to BuzzFeed News. He also once lamented that you can no longer call women “sluts.”

Jared Polis

Gubernatorial Candidate Jared Polis And Colorado Democrats Hold Election Night Event

Getty ImagesRick T. Wilking

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Democratic Colorado Representative Jared Polis became the first openly gay man elected to a governor’s mansion. It’s good news for Coloradans who like health care, early childhood education, and the environment. It’s bad news for that one Colorado baker who went to the Supreme Court to fight for his right to refuse service to LGBTQ customers, appeared in an anti-Polis attack ad, and is currently under investigation by the state’s civil rights commission.

Kate Brown

Oregon Governor Kate Brown

Getty ImagesAnthony Pidgeon

Oregon Governor Kate Brown—the first openly bisexual governor in U.S. history—won re-election last night. She defeated the Republican challenger Knute Buehler in a tight race.


In a ballot measure, the state of Massachusetts voted to uphold a two-year-old state law that protects transgender people from discrimination in public spaces including restrooms and locker rooms. The vote is seen as a response to local efforts to repeal the law and Trump Administration efforts to erase transgender protections.

Chris Pappas

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Chris Pappas, a former restauranteur and state lawmaker, became New Hampshire’s first openly gay congressman. He defeated Republican Eddie Edwards to win the state’s 1st Congressional District.

Kim Davis

Mike Huckabee Holds Rally in Support of Jailed Clerk Kim Davis in Kentucky

Getty ImagesTy Wright

A small one, but a symbolic one: Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who became infamous for ignoring a U.S. federal court order to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, was defeated by Democrat Elwood Caudill Jr.

Tammy Baldwin

EMILY's List 30th Anniversary Gala

Getty ImagesKris Connor

America’s first openly gay Senator, Wisconsin’s Tammy Baldwin also held on to her seat last night, defeating Republican state Sen. Leah Vukmir.

Katie Hill

Democratic Candidates Push to Flip House Seats From Republicans In California

Getty ImagesMario Tama

Hill won California’s 25th congressional district after an extremely close race, becoming the state’s first openly-bisexual congressperson. She beat incumbent Steve Knight, who the Advocate notes is the son of the late Pete Knight, the California state senator who wrote the ban on same-sex marriage, which voters passed in 2000.

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