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New Congresswoman and Ally Wastes No Time, Hangs a Trans Pride Flag

New Congresswoman and Ally Wastes No Time, Hangs a Trans Pride Flag

Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va) with HRC Regional Field Director Narissa Rahaman

Rep. Jennifer Wexton of Virginia was an ally as a state legislator, and she’s aiming to bring that same work to Congress.​

If there's one symbol of how different this new Congress is trying to be from its 115 predecessors, a newly sworn-in representative from Virginia may have it.

Shortly after being sworn in, a version of the transgender pride flag was displayed outside of the congressional office of Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.) as of Thursday, The Hill reports.

"The trans community has been under attack. I wanted to show my solidarity because we are talking about my friends and family," Wexton said in a statement to The Hill.

Human Rights Campaign field organizer Narissa Rahaman posted a photo of the flag on social media Thursday, the day the new Congress began its session. She said on Facebook that seeing the flag was an emotional moment for her.

"The congresswoman said to me, `Did you see the flag? I think we're the only office on the Hill with one,'" Rahaman said. The emblem stands beside the flag of Virginia outside of her office.

Wexton is not the first to display this flag though -- former Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.) had one outside of his office as a nod to his grandchild who is trans. "No one should be denied equal treatment under the law for being who they are," he wrote on Facebook in 2016, when he unveiled his office's flag display.

Wexton, an LGBTQ+ ally, was a state legislator in Virginia before being elected to Congress. HRC endorsed Wexton's challenge to Rep. Barbara Comstock, who had a "zero" score on the organization's Congressional Scorecard.

"In the Virginia General Assembly, Wexton worked tirelessly to advance fairness and equality for all," HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs, JoDee Winterhof, said in a statement after Wexton's victory in November. According to the organization Wexton, supported a ban on anti-LGBTQ discrimination, as well as bills to expand the state's hate crimes statutes to also include LGBTQ people and another bill to protect queer youth from conversion therapy practices.

This Congress is now the queerest and most diverse in history, with 102 women (and within that, a historic number of women of color,) and three queer women joining the ranks, including representatives Angie Craig (D-Minn.), Katie Hill (D-Calif.), and Sharice Davids (D-Kan.).

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

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