November 27, 2021 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

First Out Gay Immigrant Running For California State Assembly

Godfrey Santos Plata is the first out gay immigrant ever to run for California State Assembly for Assembly District 53. 

Plata is running against six-year incumbent Miguel Santiago and although he is unlikely to win against Santiago his campaign produced the most competitive race for Assembly District 53 in eight years.

Plata would’ve been the first out gay immigrant and the only renter among the 80 elected officials to hold a seat in the California State Assembly. Despite the odds against Plata, a progressive running from the left of Santiago, the tight race shows that incumbents like Santiago are vulnerable to the progressive wave sweeping across the nation.

For many of the people in Assembly District 53, Plata’s candidacy was a fresh start from their incumbent. Plata ran a grassroots, renter-focused campaign from his Koreatown apartment with less than one-fifth of Santiago’s funding. He and his volunteers engaged deeply with the community, knocking on doors from 2019 to the start of the pandemic shutdown, and spending hours phone and text banking once the pandemic started. His mission to seek justice for constituents underrepresented in policy-making — renters, workers, immigrants, BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) and LGBTQ communities — across sectors like public education, the criminal legal system, housing, and labor, resonated deeply with almost 40,000 community members and counting.

“Historically, the 53rd district has the fourth-lowest voter turnout in the state, and today was the closest race the district has seen since before 2012. By engaging with residents one-on-one, we’ve been able to build community members’ expectations for their State Assembly. Though this election cycle might’ve not been a victory for us, our community is getting smarter about the specific powers of state legislators and are raising the bar for the types of  leaders they want representing them,” said Plata.

Plata and his volunteers celebrate their work and grassroots effort, knowing well that they’ve made significant long-term strides in progressive politics. In a debrief to his campaign team, Plata offered himself as a resource for those who are thinking about running for office or plan to organize in the future, hoping to share his lessons learned from his own campaign.

“Godfrey and the team are people who have been doing work to benefit the community before this election. Godfrey’s commitment to his students, being a renter, and his understanding of the major issues that affect tenants was a reason why I decided to volunteer. We need people who care and have lived experiences like ours, and Godfrey is someone who could represent the working-class and tenants of all backgrounds,” said Jacqueline Hernandez, a volunteer from Plata’s campaign.

Plata was endorsed by Run for Something, Sunrise Movement LA, Our Revolution LA, LA Podcast, Health Care for All – Los Angeles Chapter, and Samahang Pilipino, just to name a few.

Related Posts

LGBTQ Center Long Beach Adds New Staff

November 16, 2021

November 16, 2021

The LGBTQ Center Long Beach has added three new members to its board of directors as well as the new...

34th Annual AIDS Walk Long Beach

November 16, 2021

November 16, 2021

The 34th Annual AIDS Walk Long Beach, a benefit for the LGBTQ Center Long Beach and other local providers returned...

LA County Addresses Disproportionate Amount Of Women and LGBTQ Populations In L.A. Jails

November 16, 2021

November 16, 2021

On Tuesday, October 19, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors passed a motion that the board hopes will do...

County Board Of Supervisors Approves $3.6 Million To Serve LGBTQ Foster Youth

November 16, 2021

November 16, 2021

L.A County Board or Supervisors has passed a supplemental budget to its fiscal year 2021-2022, which includes an allocation of...

City Council of WeHo Approves Draft Ordinance to Implement a Citywide Minimum Wage

November 10, 2021

November 10, 2021

The City Council of the City of West Hollywood has unanimously approved a draft Ordinance to establish a citywide minimum...

WeHo Approves Resolution Recognizing November As Native American Heritage Month

November 10, 2021

November 10, 2021

The City of West Hollywood City Council has approved a Resolution recognizing November as Native American Heritage Month. The Resolution...

WeHo Halloween Carnaval 2021 Cancelled

October 31, 2021

October 31, 2021

The City of West Hollywood is reminding the community and the region that the City’s annual Halloween Carnaval will not...

Zombie Beach In Venice

October 31, 2021

October 31, 2021

Venice Pride and James’ Beach will present a monstrous dance party titled Zombie Beach to celebrate this Halloween season.  The...

World’s First LGBTQ Mariachi Band Performs for the Center to Celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month

October 26, 2021

October 26, 2021

Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles—the world’s first LGBTQ mariachi—entertained more than 50 Center clients and staff members with an exuberant...

LGBTQ Car Show In Long Beach

October 26, 2021

October 26, 2021

Great Autos car club got a chance to show off its Rainbow Car Show to the Marina Pacifica parking lot...

New Documentary Pays Tribute to Transgender ‘AIDS diva’ Connie Norman

October 26, 2021

October 26, 2021

A new documentary titled “AIDS Diva: The Legend of Connie Norman,” will pay tribute to the transgender leader in AIDS...

LA County Votes To Increase Services For LGBTQ Jail Populations

October 26, 2021

October 26, 2021

On Tuesday, Oct. 19 the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to expand mental health treatment and other...

New Senior Housing From LA LGBT Center’s Ariadne Getty Foundation

October 26, 2021

October 26, 2021

The LA LGBT Center has completed construction of a new senior housing complex next-door to its Anita May Rosenstein Campus...

Team Trans* Walk-Out At Netflix Office In Hollywood

October 18, 2021

October 18, 2021

Netflix’s trans employee resource group is planning a Team Trans* employee walk-out on October 20th at the Netflix office located...

WeHo Announces “Hybrid” City Council Meetings

October 18, 2021

October 18, 2021

The City of West Hollywood will begin ‘hybrid’ in-person and teleconference city council meetings.  Starting on Monday, October 18th the...