Meet Danica Roem, Virginia's first transgender elected official

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Of all the candidates who won last night, Roem is definitely the most celebrated, probably because she's the first trans person ever elected to state office, was endorsed by former Vice President Joe Biden and because her defeated opponent was Robert G. Marshall, a longtime conservative incumbent who called himself Virginia's "chief homophobe" and who authored a failed transphobic bathroom bill in 2017.

So then what did Roem have to say about Marshall once it was announced that she had successfully beat him out for the state seat? She also argued that Marshall had spent too much of his energy during his term tackling social issues.

This year, Marshall introduced a bill that would have forced transgender people to use public restrooms associated with their birth gender, instead of the gender they identify with.

During the campaign, Marshall refused to use Roem's correct pronouns. With a message that acknowledged transgender rights but emphasized other local issues of importance to her Manassas Park district's voters.

"She's never had menstrual cramps, and she's never had a baby, and she never will be able to", said Carol Fox, a community activist in the Heritage Hunt section of Prince William, where Roem campaigned repeatedly.

Roem had campaigned on everyday issues, like reducing traffic on a congested state highway, and told Mother Jones in a recent interview that he campaign was about policy, not just her identity. "I, along with Equality Virginia's staff and board, send our heartfelt congratulations to Danica, and we look forward to working with her at the General Assembly to pass protections for gay and transgender Virginians". "We don't just want a seat at the table, we want to set the table".

This video shows Roem's victory speech at the election night watch party.

Roem raised more than twice as many funds as Marshall, receiving significant donations from out of state and national donors including the Victory Fund, a national group that aims to elect LGBTQ leaders.

"For 26 years I've been proud to fight for you, and fight for our future", he said. "Though we all wish tonight would have turned out differently, I am deeply grateful for your support and effort over the years", the statement read.

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