Despite the massive progress made in recent years that has seen a record number of LGBTQ representatives elected to office, we are still woefully trailing mainstream candidates.
New Gallup polling data shows 7.1 percent of the U.S. population identifies as LGBTQ – up from 5.6 percent in 2020. The new data, released yesterday, further reveals the enormous gap in LGBTQ elected representation in the U.S., where just 0.2 percent of elected positions are held by LGBTQ people. Currently, there are only 1,021 LGBTQ elected officials serving nationwide. To achieve equitable representation, voters need to elect 35,876 more LGBTQ people to public office.
Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Institute, released the following statement about the new data: “It is encouraging to see the number of out LGBTQ people continue to grow and that a historic number of young people feel safe and confident to be open about their sexual orientation and gender identity. While this is a momentous time for our community, we still have a long way to go to gain equitable inclusion and representation in politics.
“LGBTQ people have historically been disenfranchised from government positions and this new data reveals the need to continue building momentum behind the Rainbow Wave until we achieve parity. Equitable representation cannot simply be an aspiration, it must be a reality. Our rights depend on it.”
Where We Go From Here
LGBTQ people are underrepresented at every level of government in the U.S.
To achieve equitable representation at 7.1 percent, America would need to elect:
- 2 more LGBTQ governors (for a total of four out of 50);
- 19 more LGBTQ statewide executives (for a total of 25 out of 346);
- 5 more LGBTQ U.S. Senators (for a total of seven out of 100);
- 22 more LGBTQ U.S. House members (for a total of 31 out of 435);
- 338 more LGBTQ state legislators (for a total of 524 out of 7,383); and
- 96 more LGBTQ mayors of cities with a population of over 30,000 people (for a total of 115 out of 1,621).
Currently, there are 625 known out LGBTQ local elected officials (excluding mayors) and 123 known out LGBTQ elected judicial officials in the U.S. You can view all 1,021 LGBTQ people serving in elected positions at outforamerica.org.
About LGBTQ Victory Institute
LGBTQ Victory Institute works to achieve and sustain global equality through leadership development, training, and convening to increase the number, expand the diversity, and ensure the success of openly LGBTQ elected and appointed officials at all levels of government.