Pete Buttigieg Set to Become First LGBTQ Senate-Confirmed Cabinet Member; Approved by Senate Committee

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation moved his nomination forward by a vote of 21 to 3; Almost certain to be confirmed by the full U.S. Senate

Washington, DC – Today the United States Senate’s Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation recommended the full Senate confirm Pete Buttigieg as Secretary of Transportation by a vote of 21 to 3. The recommendation paves the way for Buttigieg to become the first out LGBTQ person to serve in a Senate-approved Cabinet position.

Annise Parker, the former mayor of Houston and now President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Institute, released the following statement about the confirmation hearing:

“Pete testifying at his confirmation hearing, with his husband looking on, will be among the powerful images that define this unprecedented transition and will be remembered as a milestone moment in our nation’s move toward social justice. Pete is shattering a centuries-old political barrier that will pave the way for more LGBTQ Americans to pursue and serve in high-level appointed positions – and that is transformative.

“While this is a groundbreaking moment, I know Pete is focused on the difficult task ahead. America is in desperate need of a revitalized transportation effort and nobody understands that better than our nation’s mayors. Pete’s two terms in South Bend provides him the experience and perspective needed to propose bold solutions that address both our crumbling infrastructure and the current economic crisis. He is going to make an excellent Secretary of Transportation.”

LGBTQ Victory Institute’s Presidential Appointments Initiative set four goals for the Biden-Harris administration, including appointing the first out Senate-confirmed Cabinet member. The other three goals include:

  • Nominate an openly LGBTQ U.S. Supreme Court justice for the first time;
  • Appoint openly LGBTQ woman ambassadors, LGBTQ ambassadors of color, and transgender ambassadors for the first time; and
  • Ensure openly LGBTQ people receive equitable representation among presidential appointees and that they reflect the full diversity of the LGBTQ community.

Victory Institute’s Presidential Appointments Initiative – a coalition of 32 LGBTQ and allied organizations – will put forward hundreds of exemplary LGBTQ candidates for positions throughout the next four years and advocate for their consideration. It aims to help the president’s team create the most LGBTQ-inclusive administration in U.S. history.

The Initiative – first launched by Victory Institute during President Bill Clinton’s administration – achieved unprecedented success under President Barack Obama, who appointed approximately 330 LGBTQ people, the most in history. Of those, 158 were assisted by the Presidential Appointments Initiative.

About 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.