While the RNC is trying its damnest to bolt the closet door shut, the Democratic National Convention is on track to break records with the number of openly LGBT candidates attending next week’s event in Charlotte, NC.
According to the Washington Blade, National Stonewall Democrats identified 470 openly LGBT delegates expected to attend the 2012 convention and for the first time Arkansas, Mississippi and Alaska are among the states contributing to that number.
When taking into account officials attending the convention, we’re talking a total of 518 LGBT participants. Though the number could be even higher since the NSD has incomplete info from gay political meccas, California and New York.
This year easily trumps 2008’s convention in Denver, which had 365 LGBT participants and the 2004 convention in Boston, which drew 282. The reason could be that this is the first year each state has set a goal to send at least one LGBT delegate. Some states have a goal as low as one while California is setting the gay bar at 74. Some 37 states have met or exceeded their goals while 16 have fallen short.
A record number of transgender delegates — about nine or ten — are also expected to attend this year’s DNC. These numbers aren’t official and it’s unclear when the DNC will make the final numbers public, though they’re expected to come out some time before the convention starts on September 3.