Ed Oakley seemed poised to make history when he ran for Dallas mayor. Unfortunately, voters didn’t agree: the openly homo politico lost 13,000 votes to straight businessman, Tom Leppert.
Victory Fund’s Denis Dison, whose gay group helped raise over $200,000 for Oakley’s campaign, lamented Oakley’s loss:
This would have been historic. For the ninth-largest city in the country, and in one of the reddest states in the country – it would have obviously been an amazing achievement.
Sure, Oakley’s upset about the loss, but he’s certainly buoyed by his 42% win:
I can’t tell you what it’s been like … to serve Dallas, change Dallas and put Dallas on a path of greatness. I truly believe I’ve been part of that.
Victory Fund’s Chuck Wolfe also celebrated Oakley’s relatively large stake in the city’s mayoral run-off:
They say ‘close’ doesn’t count in politics, but Ed Oakley’s historic campaign may have changed politics forever. That an openly gay man was a serious contender to become mayor of one the largest cities in America is a testament to the fair-mindedness of this country, and a wake-up call for the political establishment. Ed ran neck and neck with a self-funded opponent, but he never ran away from the truth about his sexual orientation.
Honesty in politics? How refreshing! Well done, Oakley. Don’t be discouraged, we’re sure you’ll make even more moves down the road to freedom.