09/23/2013 01:51 pm ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

Bi Political Leaders Blazing A Trail For Others


Out bisexual political leaders may be few and far between, but over the last few years we have finally seen a number of state leaders, and one national leader, emerge onto the political scene while being out and proud bisexuals. However, only five of approximately 90 out LGBT state-level legislators are bisexual according to the Victory Fund, so there is still much more to be done for bi politicians to sustain a significant presence.

In 1997, Evelyn Mantilla, a newly elected state representative in Connecticut made the decision to come out as bisexual, becoming the first to do so at a state level. “My partner and I began to feel what it really meant to be in the closet, as I was suddenly a public figure. My instincts quickly told me that I would not want to live my life that way. From a political perspective, it also became clear to me that I would be most effective in fighting for gay rights if I was open about myself. We now know that having our own at the table is one of the factors that can change the hearts and minds of policymakers.”

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