Gay marriage was just defeated in New York, but here’s a little something to sweeten the tea of Prop 8 haters: not only did Houston just elect its first openly gay mayor, but also a gay Latino man was just chosen to lead the state Assembly! Even cooler? The guy was a Berkeley alum!

The man is John Pérez, a Democrat from Los Angeles. His roots in labor run deep, and he also spent time as the Democratic Caucus’ chairman. Reports say he will be key in budget negotiations with the Governator.

His election is considered a landmark to many.

“It’s very, very poignant,” said Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, who is also gay. “I was a personal friend of (slain San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk) and to live long enough to see this is very significant. … Like Milk said, you have to give them hope, and I think what happened today is going to give people hope.”

Here’s hoping, then, that Pérez gets out there and shows what Berkeley grads are really made of. At the very least, his election will bring some change to Sacramento. After all, we’ve certainly never had a gay Latino man leading the Assembly before. And he’s a Bear? Our little Berserkley hearts might just burst with pride.

Image source: scazon under Creative Commons
Gay Latino man chosen to lead state Assembly [SF Gate]

Ricardo Alberto Gomez said:
Dec 14, 2009 at 10:13 am

He’s a cool guy. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with him a few times. He’s also a CalSERVE alum and served as the party’s chair for a period of time.

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