Maura Healey and Tina Kotek make historical past, successful elections to be first brazenly lesbian U.S. governors


Maura Healey elected Governor of Massachusetts

Maura Healey elected Governor of Massachusetts


Two ladies made historical past after they gained their gubernatorial races within the 2022 midterm elections — changing into the primary two brazenly lesbian governors within the U.S.

Maura Healey is the primary girl to be elected governor of Massachusetts. Tina Kotek, the projected winner of the Oregon governor’s race, can be solely the second girl elected to steer her state.

Healey, who was the first openly gay legal professional normal elected within the nation in 2014, was beforehand a civil rights lawyer. She led the primary state problem to the Defense of Marriage Act, which banned same-sex marriage. 

Maura Healey
Maura Healey gained her marketing campaign for governor of Massachusetts.

CBS Boston

As legal professional normal, she labored to carry Purdue Pharma and the Sackler household accountable for his or her position in fueling the opioid epidemic, and her workplace sued Exxon Mobil for mendacity about local weather change.

She ran on a platform of investing in housing, public transportation, the clear vitality economic system, and job coaching.

Healey gained the gubernatorial race towards Republican Geoff Diehl. Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican, determined to not search re-election.

Massachusetts has had a girl governor earlier than — Jane Swift was the primary girl to fill the workplace in 2001 — however she was appointed to the position, not elected, when former Gov. Paul Cellucci was named U.S. Ambassador to Canada. 

Healey ran alongside lieutenant governor candidate Kim Driscoll, the mayor of Salem.

The Human Rights Campaign applauded Healey’s win, saying, “as one of our nation’s first lesbian governors, she will not only be a champion of pro-equality policies, but also a role model for the entire LGBTQ+ community.”

In Oregon, it took a number of days of vote-counting earlier than Kotek’s victory in a three-person race was clear and her Republican opponent conceded. Kotek has served as speaker of the home in Oregon since 2013. She labored for nonprofits earlier than changing into a state consultant in 2007.

Tina Kotek
Oregon Democrat Tina Kotek served as a state legislator and House speaker in earlier than operating for governor.

Tina Kotek handout by way of Reuters

She moved to Oregon from the East Coast in 1987 and earned a level on the University of Oregon.

“I also came out as a lesbian in my early twenties and it was liberating,” Kotek writes on her campaign website. “While it wasn’t always easy, each experience coming out to others strengthened my resilience. For me, coming out became a personal responsibility to undermine hatred and bigotry. But it was bigger than me as an individual, so while getting my graduate degree, I fought for and won domestic partnership rights for faculty and students at the University of Washington.”

Tina has been along with her spouse, Aimee, for 17 years. 

Kotek confronted a detailed race towards Republican Christine Drazan and impartial Betsy Johnson, a former Democrat who drew some voters away from Kotek. Oregon has had a Democratic governor since 1987. 

Oregon Governor Kate Brown, who determined to not search re-election, turned the nation’s first brazenly bisexual governor in 2015. She was beforehand Oregon’s secretary of state and have become governor when Gov. John Kitzhaber resigned. 


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