Around the Nation

Houston Voters Elect Openly-Gay Mayor

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Over the weekend in Houston, Annise Parker was elected as the city's first openly gay mayor. The race was a run off between two Democratic candidates. Parker began her political career as a gay activist before serving on Houston's City Council. Parker calls it "a historic election" for her community.


Houston has joined a growing list of American cities that have elected an openly gay mayor. This weekend, its vote followed Portland, Oregon, Providence, Rhode Island, and Cambridge, Massachusetts. But Houston's race attracted national attention because it is the fourth-largest city in the country.

Annise Parker began her political career as a gay activist before serving on Houston's city council. Though in the race for mayor she played down her sexual orientation, some conservative religious groups made an issue of it. Still, after being elected, Parker joked she was a first - the first graduate of Rice University to be elected Houston's mayor.

Copyright © 2009 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from