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June 29, 2016

Woman For President? Okay; How About Transgenders For Congress?

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah—Despite its "porn is a public health crisis" resolution, there may be hope for Utah after all: Its Democratic Party has just nominated a transgendered woman, Misty K. Snow, for the U.S. Senate—and considering that her opponent will be far-right-wing asshole Tea Party Republican Mike Lee, she might just stand a chance. In fact, Snow is one of the first transgendered people ever to be nominated to a congressional seat—the other is Colorado Dem Misty Plowright—and as such represents the growing American ideals of non-discrimination and sexual identity freedom. Snow beat out her Democratic opponent in the primary, Jonathan Swinton, by roughly 8,000 votes—not a whole lot of Dems in Utah, or at least, not a lot that vote in primaries—and a poll conducted by The Salt Lake Tribune early this month gave Lee a 14 percent lead over Snow, but considering that the presidential contest is likely to draw more folks to the voting booths, many there to see that Donald Trump doesn't get to run the U.S. into the ground, Snow might have a good chance on the Dem down-ticket. "There are some that claim that Utah is not ready for a candidate like me, but I strongly disagree. Utah is not only ready but in desperate need of a Senator exactly like me," Snow wrote on her website. "We cannot wait for others to give us equality. We have to claim equality for ourselves." Snow has received endorsements from pretty much all the Democratic groups in Utah, including the Young Democrats of Utah, the Womenh's Caucus, the Utah Democratic Progressive Caucus, the Stonewall Democrats of Utah (which we're guessing is a gay group), the Utah State Hispanic Democratic Caucus, the Asian/Pacific Islander Caucus, and even the Disability Caucus. And there's no doubt that Snow, 30, is a woman of the people. She's worked as a cashier at a Harmons grocery store for the past 13 years, having been unable to afford college, so she's well up on the problems facing the not-wealthy in her state. "She has called for a $15 per hour minimum wage, paid family leave, legalized marijuana, criminal-justice reform and free or reduced tuition for higher education, a platform inspired by presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT," The Salt Lake Tribune noted. "She said her goal is to boost working-class people such as herself." Meanwhile, over in Colorado, Plowright is vying to be the U.S. Representative for the 5th District, whose county seat is the ultra-religious community of Colorado Springs, challenging the current seat-holder, Repugnican Doug Lamborn, a major proponent of tax cuts for the rich. Plowright, 33, has a similar background to Snow, and was raised by a single mother and grandmother. "Like Snow, Plowright could not afford to attend college, instead joining the U.S. Army and working in IT before an honorable discharge in 2003," noted Jezebel's  Julianne Escobedo Shepherd. "Plowrigh t... is a self-described 'IT nerd' and 'policy wonk' who also ran on a more progressive platform, emphasizing income inequality, education and police reform, the reinstatement of voting rights, climate change and foreign diplomacy. She also advocates for expanding and modernizing broadband access and thereby creating jobs in the tech sector." And as conservative as Colorado Springs might be, let's not forget that Colorado was the first state to completely legalize recreational marijuana—and a lot of the beneficiaries of that legalization might just vote her into office. In any case, having two transgendered candidates for federal office is a big step forward for acceptance of transgendered people in society. Pictured: Misty K. Snow.

 
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