Virginia state Delegate Danica Roem, a
Democrat from Manassas, was sworn in on Wednesday.
Roem defeated incumbent Delegate Bob
Marshall, a Republican, in November, making her the United State's
first openly transgender person to be elected to a state legislature.
Roem and Delegate Dawn Adams, a
Democrat from Richmond and the first out lesbian to be elected to the
Virginia General Assembly, were sworn in on the first day of the 2018
legislative session. They join three additional LGBT lawmakers,
including Senator Adam Ebbin and Delegates Mark Sickles and Mark
Levine, all of whom are Democrats.
Democrats racked up 15 seats on
November 7, shrinking the Republican majority down to 51-49.
According to WTOP, Roem has already
submitted eight bills and two resolutions.
“I have a lot of work to do on behalf
of the people of the 13th District: to finally fix [Virginia State]
Route 28, to just deal with all the [Freedom of Information Act]
bills I’m putting in, executing the utility bills, and just making
sure that government’s operating with a lot more accountability and
transparency,” Roem told the outlet.
Marshall, whom Roem defeated, is an
outspoken opponent of LGBT rights and proudly once described himself
as Virginia's “chief homophobe.”
Roem said that she understands the
significant of her win, adding that she hopes that “LGBTQ kids
everywhere” know that they can succeed if they are true to
“[I]f they follow the words of St.
Francis de Sales, to be who you are and be that well, you can achieve
incredible things here,” Roem