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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, July 1, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 27
Misty K. Snow, Utah Democrat:

First openly Trans candidate for US Senate
Section One
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Misty K. Snow, Utah Democrat:

First openly Trans candidate for US Senate

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

Misty K. Snow of Utah became the first openly Transgender candidate for US Senate when she clinched the Democratic nomination on June 28.

'A lot of people have told me whether I win or lose, I'm already making a difference just by running,' Snow told the Salt Lake Tribune.

In unofficial primary returns, Snow clobbered her conservative Democratic rival Jonathan Swinton, with 59.5% of the vote to Swinton's 40.5%.

Snow jumped in the race just before the filing deadline because she wanted to offer a progressive alternative to Swinton. Swinton led in the state convention, but Snow put together enough votes to force a primary, attacking Swinton for advocating limits to abortion rights.

Snow, on the other hand, campaigned on a platform inspired by presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders:

o a $15 per hour minimum wage

o paid family leave

o legalized marijuana

o criminal justice reform

o free or reduced tuition for higher education

Snow said her goal was to advance working class people like herself. She is currently employed as a grocery cashier and has not attended college, in part because of the high cost.

In the general election Snow will now face incumbent Sen. Mike Lee, who she describes as 'loathsome.' Lee is known as one of the Senate's most conservative Republicans, with 100% ratings from the Club for Growth and the American Conservative Union, and 99% from the Heritage Foundation.

Snow transitioned in 2014 and says that being a Transgender person will help her drum up attention and campaign money.

A second Transgender candidate, Misty Plowright, won the Democratic nomination in Colorado's conservative 5th House District.

JoDee Winterhof, senior vice president of Policy and Political Affairs at the Human Rights Campaign, told NBC News that both primary wins 'deserve recognition and celebration.'

'It is historic that this November, the top Utah Democrat on the ballot in that state will be a transgender woman,' Winterhof said in a statement.

'Regardless of the outcome in the fall, both of these candidates have demonstrated to transgender people across the country that our politics are stronger when diverse voices are not only heard but also included.'

While both candidates face an uphill battle in a conservative state, Winterhoff predicted that 'it is only a matter of time, as progress and visibility continue to expand, that we'll see transgender people in Congress.'

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