Brian Carroll on Thursday announced his
bid for a Colorado House seat, making him the first openly gay
service member on active duty to run for elected office.
served two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq with Army Special
Forces Information Management, Special Operations Command. He
continues to serve in the Colorado National Guard.
“As far as I know I am the first out
veteran and active national guardsman in the country to officially
run for office since the repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,'”
Carroll said in a statement.
“Don't Ask, Don't Tell” was
repealed on September 20. The law for 18 years banned gay and
bisexual troops from serving openly.
“Ultimately, what this comes down to,
I believe, is standing up and providing an opportunity for
leadership,” Carroll told The
Huffington Post. “Really, the repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't
Tell' provides that opportunity – not only for myself, but for so
many other openly gay members of the military. This really is a
historic moment, and I think the people are going to look back at
this, and say, 'This is history in the making. This is when the
entire ballgame changed.'”
Metro Weekly's Chris Geidner
notes that Carroll is not the first openly gay veteran to run for
elected office. Anthony Woods, an Army veteran who served in Iraq,
ran for Congress in 2009. And in1999, Republican Steve May came out
to colleagues and constituents during a speech on the floor of the
Arizona statehouse where he served. The active duty Army reservist
was allowed to finish his term.