Small Victories Issue 45

Originally posted on the new Small Victories website

After the results of Tuesday’s election, we felt a little something like this: 

Small Victories Issue 45

And we were also thrilled to see protesters disrupt Ralph Northam’s victory speech and demand he support sanctuary cities. As Brittany Packnett tweeted,

Small Victories Issue 45

This is another BIG week of victories, and while the elections have been front and center, there’s a whole lot more—so make sure to keep scrolling all the way to the end.


1. Tuesday’s elections delivered so many historic wins from people of color, transgender candidates, women, and socialists. To recap:

👉  In Minneapolis, poet and activist Andrea Jenkins became the first openly transgender woman of color to be elected anywhere in the country.

👉  Danica Roem defeated a transphobic bigot to become the first transgender state legislator in Virginia. (Her victory speech is a must-see.)

👉  Hala Ayala and Elizabeth Guzman made history as the first Latinas elected to the Virginia  state House.

👉  Kathy Tran, a former refugee, is now the first Asian-American woman elected to the VA House of Delegates, and Kelly Fowler is the state House’s first Asian-American Pacific Islander. (Fun fact: She was inspired to run at the Women’s March.)

👉  Seattle elected Jenny Durkan, the city’s first lesbian mayor and first female mayor in nearly a century, and Zachary DeWolf, their first openly gay school board member.

👉  Virginia’s Lee Carter ousted the GOP whip to become the first Democratic Socialist elected to the state House.

👉  Ravi Bhalla is now New Jersey’s first Sikh mayor.

👉  In Montana, Wilmot Collins, a Liberian refugee, became the first black mayor in the state’s history.

👉  Charlotte, NC elected their first African-American woman mayor, Vi Lyles, and St. Paul, MN chose the city’s first mayor of color, Melvin Carter.

👉  DSA member Seema Singh Perez became Knoxville, TN’s first Indian-American council member.

👉  Every member of the Palm Springs, CA City Council identifies as LGBTQ+.

👉  Dawn Adams became the first out lesbian delegate in Virginia’s history.

👉  New Jersey and Virginia elected their states’ first and second black lieutenant governors.

👉  The very first mayor of Framingham, MA will be a woman of color, Yvonne Spicer, and Joyce Craig became the first female mayor in Manchester, NH.

👉  A conservative Long Island town elected Laura Gillen, the first Democratic town supervisor in more than a century.

2. We’re still celebrating these races:

👉  Civil rights attorney Larry Krasner will be Philadelphia’s next district attorney. This is SUCH a huge victory, and prisoners were instrumental in achieving this win.

👉  Vernetta Alston, a queer black woman and attorney fighting against the death penalty for people wrongfully accused, was elected to city council in Durham, NC. (We’re obsessed with the fact that she hired a Celine Dion impersonator to lip-sync “My Heart Will Go On” at her victory party.)

👉  After a Republican politician made a sexist joke about the Women’s March, Ashley Bennett ran for office for the first time to replace him—and won.

👉  Chris Hurst, the boyfriend of Alison Parker, the journalist who was shot and killed on live TV two years ago, defeated a pro-gun Republican incumbent.

👉  Public defender Jennifer Carroll Foy won a seat in Virginia’s state House and promised to fight for criminal justice reform.

👉  Activist Nikuyah Walker was elected to city council in Charlottesville, VA.

👉  Stephanie Morales, a Virginia attorney who prosecuted a white police officer for killing a black teenager (and won the case), was re-elected.

👉  After founding an Indivisible group, Wendy Gooditis ran for office and beat a Republican incumbent.

👉  An Ohio mayor who left the Democratic Party to support Donald Trump was handily defeated.

3. Elections by the numbers:

👉  15 Democratic Socialist of America candidates won—more than half of their total contenders!—including a candidate in Pittsburgh, PA who unseated a 24-year incumbent.

👉  21 Our Revolution candidates were elected, including nine women, four Latinx candidates, four African-Americans, and two openly LGBTQ+ candidates

👉  5 out of 5 Flippable candidates in Virginia won their races.

👉  31 Run for Something candidates soared to victory.

👉  5 Latino Victory Fund candidates were elected.

👉  7 transgender candidates won races across the country.

👉  6 women of color were elected to Boston City Council.

👉  Democrats picked up three seats in the Georgia state House, and flipped more seats in Virginia than in any election since 1899. Oh, and did we mention that 11 of those 14 seats were won by women?

4. And one last thing:

👉  Democratic governors defeated Republican opponents in Virginia and New Jersey.

👉  Maine voted to expand Medicaid. (Their governor is currently trying to block this from happening, but we suspect this isn’t the end of this fight.)

👉  Criminal justice reformer Manka Dhingra flipped not only her seat but also the entire Washington state Senate, and now the full state government is in Democratic control—as is New Jersey.

👉  Democrats also won big in mayoral races across the country.

5. After writing his first weekly column, Milo Yiannopoulos and the editor that hired him were fired from The Daily Caller.

6. Despite Trump cutting the ACA advertising budget by 90%, people are visiting and signing up for Obamacare in record numbers. #ObamaStillCares

7. After a social media campaign, public outcry, and an ACLU lawsuit, ten-year-old Rosa Maria Hernandez has been released from detention.

8. Spelman and Morehouse college students went on hunger strike to call attention to food insecurity on campus—and convinced both schools to offer 14,000 free meals to students each year. #WhyWeStrike 

9. During his stopover in Hawaii, locals decided to welcome Trump in the best way possible. #NoAloha 🌺

10. Massachusetts became the first state in the country to ban bump stocks.

11. Notre Dame reversed course and will continue offering birth control coverage for faculty, staff and students. #NotYrDame

12. More than 8,000 students walked out of schools across the country—including hundreds in DC who occupied a Senate office building—to demand a clean DREAM Act. 🙌

13. After mounting pressure, billionaire Robert Mercer, a Trump supporter and Breitbart funder, resigned from his post at a hedge fund and sell his shares in Breitbart.

14. Maryland’s Montgomery County Council voted unanimously to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2021. The #FightFor15 continues!

15. Los Angeles County adopted a new plan to divert about 80% of arrested youth away from the criminal justice system and offer them support services instead. As a county supervisor said,

“The best juvenile justice system is one that keeps kids out of it in the first place.”

16. Even though this Grammy-winning country music star wasn’t invited to the CMAs, he showed up anyway to share his feelings about Trump—and raised money for the ACLU while he was at it.

17. A jury ruled in favor of artists and awarded them damages after a developer painted over their work at 5 Pointz in Queens.

18. Thanks to calls from Democratic senators, Trump’s voter commission is being investigated—and also sued, again, but this time by one of its own members. #NoMoreSecrets

19. When Disney banned LA Times film critics from advance screenings, the NY Times and other news outlets and critics boycotted Disney’s films in solidarity—and lo and behold, the ban was removed.

20. Kevin Spacey is being completely cut out of an upcoming feature film, and has been dropped by Netflix, CAA, and his longtime publicist, after several people came forward with sexual assault allegations against him. And with new reports about Louis CK’s sexual misconduct, HBO is showing him the door and cutting him from an upcoming comedy special.

21. Syria announced they are joining the Paris Climate Agreement, right behind Nicaragua who signed on at the end of October. 🌎

22. A woman (our hero) was fired for doing what we all wish we had the opportunity to do—giving Trump the finger. And since she lost her job, people have raised more than $35,000 to help her out.

Gratitude Journal

This week, we’re grateful for some hat help; holding on to the election feels; this famous doggo; t-shirts that look good and do good; and this speech by a guy we didn’t think we could love more than we already do.

Your Weekly Songspiration

Small Victories Issue 44
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Posted in Blog, Small Victories