More than 100 LGBTQ candidates ran in Mexico’s midterm election on Sunday Jun. 6, setting a new record in the country’s history.
117 candidates identified as members of the LGBTQ community, running for positions, across 15 governorships, 500 seats in the lower chamber of Congress and other 20,000 local posts.
Patria Jiménez, an activist and candidate for a local lawmaker, told the Washington Post the high level of participation is a result of the “social evolution” that LGBTQ activists won through protesting.
“We have marched for many years to be taken into account,” Marven, a transgender woman candidate running for a seat in the legislature said.
“Before you couldn’t come out of the closet because you were condemned to a life of physical, mental, social, workplace torture, and you were excluded everywhere,” Roshell Terranova, a candidate running for Congress told the Washington Post.
The LGBTQ candidates have focused their campaigns on public safety and the economy, as well as discrimination and same-sex marriage.
“That’s exactly why I want to serve in Congress, to fight discrimination everywhere and shake things up with a representative voice,” Maria Garcia, a transgender candidate for Congress in Mexico City, told Reuters.
Mexico’s parties are obliged to nominate equal numbers of men and women. Last January, the electoral commission also adopted a new rule stating that the parties must also nominate candidates from vulnerable groups, including the LGBT community.