Vermont has picked the first transgender gubernatorial nominee in the United States. Christine Hallquist, a 62-year-old former energy executive, beat three other candidates (including 14-year-old Ethan Sonneborn) to gain the Democratic nomination for governor in Tuesday's Vermont primary.
"I think Vermont is a beacon of hope for the rest of the country," Hallquist told Reuters. "This is what I call expanding our moral compass and that is what I think it represents."
She continued, "I love Vermont because we look beyond these surface issues. I just happen to be a leader who is transgender. Vermonters know that."
Hallquist's platform includes raising the minimum wage platform to $15, paid family and medical leave insurance, worker rights, addressing racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and legalizing marijuana.
Hallquist will go on to face the incumbent, Republican Governor Phil Scott, in the general election in November. She is one of 43 transgender candidates who have run for office in the United States this year. Senator Bernie Sanders and Chelsea Clinton have sent their congratulations.
Congratulations to @christineforvt for her Democratic primary win for Governor of Vermont tonight. Let's continue m… https://t.co/2LDwM055EW— Bernie Sanders (@Bernie Sanders)1534301655.0
Her name is Christine Hallquist. More about her here: https://t.co/6zaFuDnecO https://t.co/LaLYrOJp74— Chelsea Clinton (@Chelsea Clinton)1534342213.0
Photo via Instagram/Christine Hallquist