When Mary Gonzalez was elected to the Texas House of Representatives as an open lesbian, it was thought she broke some serious barriers. This time she may have broken some national barriers as well. Gonzalez is the first politician in the country to openly identify herself as a “pansexual”.
Gonzalez tells the Dallas Voice that she instead identifies herself as “pansexual.” While the term pansexual is easily confused with the term bisexual, Gonzalez explains that this isn’t the case. This is because pansexuals don’t believe in a gender binary and are attracted to all gender identities.
Gonzalez said that she doesn’t believe in any preconceived gender binary because “gender identity isn’t the defining part of my attraction.” She doesn’t believe she is solely a lesbian either because she has dated transgender people and other types of “gender-queer” people.
She said of her sexual identity during the campaign:
“During the campaign if I had identified as pansexual, I would have overwhelmed everyone,. Now that I’m out of the campaign, I’m completely much more able to define it. As I started to recognize the gender spectrum and dated along the gender spectrum, I was searching for words that connected to that reality, for words that embraced the spectrum. At the time I didn’t feel as if the term bisexual was encompassing of a gender spectrum that I was dating and attracted to.”
Gonzalez is running unopposed in her district for the seat she already won back in May. She reportedly beat out two Democratic challengers.
Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Victory Fund (a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender advocacy group), told Gay Politics magazine:
“This is a big victory for Mary, for El Paso and for Texas. The people of El Paso will be represented by a talented and committed fighter who knows how to get things done in Austin. And LGBT Texans will be represented by an authentic voice in the Capitol, standing up and speaking out for fairness and freedom for all.