Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Democrats Select First Transgender Nominees in Colorado and Utah

Two 'Mistys' face stiff competition in November

Utah Democrat Misty Snow will take on incumbent Republican Sen. Mike Lee in November. (Courtesy Misty Kathrine Snow Facebook page)

Eric Garcia@Eric Garcia
Posted at Jun 29, 2016 2:23 PM

Democrats in Utah and Colorado will have their first transgender nominees in the general election.

In Utah, Misty Snow, a resident of Salt Lake City, outpaced marriage counselor Jonathan Swinton by almost 19 points, earning the right to take on Republican Sen. Mike Lee in November.

Snow said her platform is inspired by Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders. She supports a $15 minimum wage, paid family leave and criminal justice reform.

In a statement after her win, Snow remarked on the nature of the campaign.

"While I’m not running on the basis of being a trans woman, my experiences as a trans woman have given me the empathy to understand the struggles of groups that feel that the American Dream is out of reach," she said. "I’m running to give a voice to the voiceless."

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Running in a red state that is typically conservative on many social issues, it's unlikely that Snow could win in a race against Lee , Utah's junior senator.

In Colorado's 5th District, Misty Plowright handily won her primary to be the Democratic nominee to run against Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn, who similarly appears to be a tough candidate to beat.

The staunchly conservative 5th District is home to James Dobson's Focus on the Family.

Plowright was unable to afford college so she enlisted in the U.S. Army and worked in IT before being honorably discharged for a non-combat related injury.

She is married to her partner of nine years, Lisa, according to her campaign website . For the past two years, the couple has also been involved with someone else.

"They have both been in a loving, longterm, committed relationship with their mutual partner, Sebastian, for the last two years," according to Plowright's website. "All three partners support each other emotionally, physically and financially."

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Similar to Snow, Plowright's Twitter feed has many retweets from Sanders supporters and she has been featured on Reddit's pro-Sanders page as an ally.

Snow and Plowright are not the first major party transgender nominees for Congress. In 2000, Vermont's Karen Kerin won the GOP nomination for the state's lone House seat. But she lost to Sanders, then a five-term congressman, in the general election.

Contact Garcia at and follow him on Twitter @EricMGarcia .

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