In a major boost for Ed Murray’s campaign, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), which typically does not engage in local races, announced today that it is endorsing his bid for Seattle mayor.
HRC is the nation’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for LGBT Americans, with more than 1.5 million members nationally, including 65,000 in Washington State. The organization ordinarily does not make endorsement in races for local office, but made an exception in Murray’s case.
“State Senator Ed Murray has changed the national landscape for LGBT equality by demonstrating exceptional dedication over his more than 15 years in public office in fighting for equality for all Washingtonians. He has shown unwavering commitment to taking on – and winning – the tough fights that are paramount to our community, including successfully building bi-partisan support for Washington State’s historic marriage equality legislation in 2012 and then playing a major leadership role in the successful effort to approve Referendum 74, which upheld that law,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “It is rare for us to get involved in a local race, but we know Ed Murray as a national leader on LGBT issues, and that is why we endorse him with great enthusiasm.”
During his time in the legislature, Murray has successfully passed groundbreaking legislation including an anti-bullying bill, the civil rights bill protecting gay and lesbian Washingtonians from discrimination, as well as domestic partner recognition, second parent adoption rights and marriage equality laws.
HRC joins other leading national and local GLBT organizations, including the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Equal Rights Washington, in backing Murray. Christine Quinn, the New York City Council Speaker who is considered the frontrunner to succeed Michael Bloomberg as mayor of New York, is the only other candidate seeking local office to win HRC’s support this year.
Griffin added that Murray’s leadership extended far beyond the arena of civil rights. “Senator Murray is a champion for Seattle and time and again has demonstrated his leadership skills in making progress on difficult issues like improving education, strengthening environmental protections, funding critical transit and transportation improvements, and writing budgets in tough economic times that still protect the poor and vulnerable,” Griffin said.
Murray expressed gratitude for the support from HRC. “I’m honored and humbled to receive the support of the Human Rights Campaign and its tens of thousands of Seattle-area members. I know first-hand from our recent R-74 marriage equality victory how active and engaged HRC members are, and I believe their support will make a huge difference in powering my campaign to victory in August and November.”