Washington, DC – There are 559 known openly LGBTQ elected officials in the United States – and America needs to elect 22,837 more to achieve equitable representation – according to LGBTQ Victory Institute’s 2018 Out for America report released today. The report documents the severe underrepresentation of LGBTQ people in key positions of power, along with demographic data that demonstrates the need to elect more LGBTQ people of color, women, and bisexual and transgender people.
Among the report’s key findings:
- 559 known LGBTQ elected officials are currently serving in the U.S., just 0.1 percent of all elected officials nationwide*;
- 22,837 more LGBTQ elected officials must be elected to achieve equitable representation;
- Just 21.2 percent of LGBTQ elected officials are people of color; and
- Only 2.7 percent of LGBTQ elected officials are bisexual and 2.3 percent are transgender.
The report also found that transgender representation more than doubled since the last Out for America report in 2017 (from six to 13 elected officials), and that fewer LGBTQ Republicans are in office (16 instead of 19) since the last report, despite overall known LGBTQ elected officials rising by 24.8 percent.
“The severe underrepresentation of LGBTQ people in elected office – especially LGBTQ people of color and transgender and bisexual people – is one of the primary reasons we see hateful legislation and policies coming from the federal government and many state legislatures,” said Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Institute. “While the increase in out LGBTQ elected officials is worth celebrating, the enormous numbers we need to elect to secure equitable representation should be a call-to-action for our entire community.”
The Out for America report is an annual analysis of LGBTQ elected representation in government based on Victory Institute’s LGBTQ elected officials database – the largest and most comprehensive listing available. The interactive Out for America map displays all known LGBTQ elected officials and is available at outforamerica.org.
Download the full 2018 Out for America report at victoryinstitute.org/OFA2018.
* Newest estimates from Gallup find the U.S. LGBTQ population to be 4.5 percent of the general population – up from 4.1 percent one year ago. There are nearly 520,000 elected positions in the United States.
About Victory Institute
Victory Institute works to increase the number of LGBTQ people in public office and provides programming, services, and other support to ensure their success.