1. News & Issues

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:


was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

Coming Out in Congress
Part 2: Two Others Out in Congress
 More of this Feature
• Part 2: Other "Outs" 
 Join The Discussion
"Your worth as a human being has nothing to do with your sexuality"
 Related Resources

• Today in Congress
Congress Resources
Rights for All
Gay Pride Month

 From Other Guides
• Coming/Being Out
Coming Out Stories
History of Coming Out
Arrest the Gay Guy!
Gays on the March
 Elsewhere On The Web
Rep. Frank's Site
Rep. Baldwin's Site
Gay Rights Comm.

Two other openly gay or lesbian U.S. Representatives are Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ) and Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI).

U.S. Rep. Jim Kolbe of Arizona
Rep. Kolbe gained national attention at the recent Republican National Convention, when members of the American Family Association (AFA), distributed a letter accusing Kolbe of violating Arizona's sodomy law and calling for his arrest. About U.S. Politics Guide John Aravosis provides all the details in his exclusive article, Arrest Gay Congressman, Far Right Says.

In the House, Kolbe is dedicated to promoting legislation to provide financial assistance to victims of hemophilia-associated AIDS. His efforts have focused on seeking full funding of the Ricky Ray Hemophilia Relief Fund.

"The face of AIDS is as diverse as our nation’s population: young, old, black, white, men, women, children and adults - this disease does not discriminate. AIDS will steal the breath of a child just a quickly as it silences the voice of a gay rights activist," stated Kolbe in his Sept. 12, 2000 column to constituents.

U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin
In 1998, Baldwin became the first woman elected to serve Wisconsin in the U.S. House of Representatives. She also claims to be the first gay person to run for and be elected to Congress after coming out. In her online biography, Rep. Baldwin states, "The first openly gay person to be elected to Congress as a non-incumbent and the first out lesbian, she has been a forceful supporter of civil rights and an advocate for those in our society whose voices, too often, are not heard."

On April 30, 2000 Congresswoman Baldwin addressed the Millennium March on Washington. Her speech Never Doubt, Baldwin expresses exactly what "coming out" meant to her:

"If I close my eyes, I can remember being here in 1987. I came to this city, this historic place, these steps. Why did I march? I was twenty-five years old and just one year into my first term in elective office in. I was OUT. I was at the point in my life where I had just realized that I did not have to choose between being honest about who I am and pursuing the career of my dreams. I could do both. And that moment of decision was, at once, one of the most terrifying and one of the most freeing of my life. So I marched ... to replace my fear with courage, my isolation with belonging, my anger with hope."  -- From Never Doubt, by Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin at the Millennium March on Washington -- April 30, 2000


Subscribe to the Newsletter


©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.