Florida to Get First Openly Gay Lawmaker

Florida is set to get its first out gay legislator, Buzzfeed reports:

RichardsonThe candidate, David Richardson, is an accountant and small-business owner advising companies on accounting and finance issues relating to government contracts. His primary victory in a heavily-Democratic district in Miami effectively guarantees his victory in November, given that no Republican sought a spot on the ballot.

Seventeen states currently have no out lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender lawmakers, according to the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, which has backed Richardson’s bid and works to help elect out LGBT candidates…

…In addition to Florida, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Texas and West Virginia, the other 12 states without out lawmakers currently are Alaska, Delaware, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee and South Carolina.

Steve Rothaus at the Miami Herald adds:

When the legislature convene in 2013 David may not be alone in making history. Orange County voters just delivered a huge primary election victory for out, gay candidate Joe Saunders in the House District 49 race. He carried his district with a 30 point margin over his Democratic challenger. Joe now faces his Republican opponent in November in an I-4 corridor battle – the most hotly contested region of the state.