Wisconsin Representative Tammy Baldwin (D) said she is likely to run for the U.S. Senate seat to be vacated by Senator Herb Kohl (D-WI), making her possibility the first openly gay member of the Senate.
Seventy-six-year old Kohl announced in May that he would not seek reelection to a fifth term in the Senate, saying that it’s “time for someone else to serve.”
“I think I am likely to run,” Baldwin told the Capital Times. “Should I run, I will have to give up my House seat. But I love this state, I love its people and I really want to see Wisconsin flourish again. It would be an amazing opportunity.”
She described the Republican agenda to repeal President Obama’s health care law, reduce abortion access and limit the power of the Environmental Protection Agency as “depressing.”
Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, said her candidacy would be a “remarkable milestone for LGBT Americans.”
“Congresswoman Baldwin is one of the most admired public officials I know,” he added. “She would have the strong support of those who want to see our economy work for all Americans, and who believe that all voices deserve a place at the table.”
Baldwin became the first openly gay candidate to win election to the U.S. Congress as a freshman in 1998.
Three other openly gay lawmakers also serve in the House: David Cicilline (D-RI), Barney Frank (D-MA) and Jared Polis (D-CO).
(H/T: Eric Kleefeld)