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Texas Gay Man Who Fought Marriage Ban Running for State Senate

Mark Phariss
AP/Stacy Revere

First Virginia, then Alabama—now hopefully Texas

A Texas gay man who sued to bring down the state's ban on same-sex marriage has announced he will be running for state senate in 2018.

If elected, Mark Phariss would be Texas's first openly gay state senator. He faces several

Phariss said he was inspired to put forth his candidacy after recent election victories by Democrats in Virginia and Alabama. He also promised that he plans to be a representative to all Texans within his district--regardless of how they feel about his sexuality.

"I'm absolutely gay. There is no way to hide that," Phariss said, according to the Dallas Morning News. "But I'm running as a Texan, and I will absolutely represent every constituent in my district if I win. So even those who vote against me -- even those who vote against me because I'm gay, I will want to listen to them and represent them."

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