Gay, Transgender Candidates Wade Into Central Florida Politics

Orlando Sentinel
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February 27, 2012
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When Randy Ross was running for Orange County School Board in 2000, he had a secret.

“I was worried people were going to find out I was gay,” Ross said.

What a difference a dozen years can make. Now there are three openly gay candidates on this year’s Orlando City Council ballot — including Ross — and a transgender candidate running for the Orange County Commission.

As society has grown more accepting of gay people during the past decade, more candidates for public office have grown willing to campaign without concealing their sexual orientation. And with issues of equality — gay marriage, adoption and workplace benefits — heating up, more members of the gay community are drawn to politics.

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