Transgender candidate Danica Roem wins historic Virginia race

Saul Bowman
November 9, 2017

Marshall was also the author of a now-void constitutional amendment that defined marriage as between one man and one woman, and sponsored a bill banning gay people from openly serving in the Virginia National Guard.

Althea Garrison, elected in MA, was the first openly transgender person to serve in a state legislature, but did not campaign as an openly transgender person during her race in 1992. He previously referred to himself as Virginia's "chief homophobe", and he drafted the state's punitive proposed "bathroom bill", which would have forced people to use the bathroom corresponding to the gender on their birth certificate.

Roem, a 33-year-old former journalist, focused his campaign on improving traffic routes and garnering increasingly progressive rights for transgenders, while the 13-term incumbent Marshall ran on a promise to preserve the more conservative values Virginia has historically espoused. Marshall introduced a "bathroom bill" to the district, it died in committee.

Roem raised $500,000 in donations, much of it coming from LGBT advocates and other supporters across the country, out raising Marshall 3-1, the Washington Post reported.

"When Delegate Marshall realized that he can not win on public policy issues, on traffic, jobs, schools and health care, he resorted to trash", she said.

Maintaining a steady social media presence, Roem did a number of public appearances and interviews as well.


The race was one of the year's most high profile and drew national and global attention and big money to the northern Virginian district.

The night was historic a lot of "firsts" to be elected happened, like Danica Roem.

Roem, who sings in a metal band in her spare time, said she learned to listen to different perspectives and digest complicated policy as a reporter for the Gainesville Times and Prince William Times, skills she would bring to bear as a delegate.

She added that there were many stories that were run about her being a transgender rather than her qualifications for office.

"Discrimination is a disqualifier", Roem said Tuesday night after her victory, the Post reports. For 26 years I've been proud to fight for you, and fight for our future.

"Thank you Hoboken. I look forward to being your Mayor!"

Other reports by

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER