In an interview with Reuters, Ritchie
Torres, America's first openly gay Afro-Latino congressman, said that
he'll prioritize LGBT rights and affordable housing in Congress.
Torres, 32, grew up with a single
mother in New York City's public housing.
“I never thought in my wildest dreams
that as a poor kid from the Bronx, I would become a United States
congressman,” Torres said.
Also making history this election cycle
are Mondaire Jones, the nation's first openly gay African-American
congressman, and Sarah McBride, who was elected to the Delaware State
Senate, making her the first transgender person in the United States
elected to a state senate. Both are Democrats.
McBride becomes first transgender state senator in U.S. history.)
Torres, a Democrat, said that as a
congressman he would fight for increased funding for affordable
housing and passage of the Equality Act, a federal LGBT protections
bill that cleared the House earlier this year but stalled in the
Senate. President Donald Trump has signaled his opposition to the
bill, while President-elect Joe Biden has called passage a priority.
“LGBTQ people of color are about to
have a seat in one of the most powerful tables,” Torres said. “A
wise person once said, 'If you don't have a seat at the table, then
you're probably on the menu.'”
“We're witnessing the collapse of
politics as an old boys club, and we're witnessing the embrace of
America as a multiracial, multiethnic, inclusive democracy,” he
Torres, who is Black and Puerto Rican,
added that he wants to be judged by his accomplishments, not his