The Victory Fund, an organization that supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political candidates, on Wednesday endorsed state Rep. Marcus Brandon for North Carolina’s 12th District special election.
Brandon is one of at least seven Democrats running to succeed Rep. Melvin Watt, who will soon leave the 12th District seat. Earlier this month, the Senate confirmed Watt to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
If Brandon wins, he would be the first openly gay African-American member of Congress in history, as well as the first openly gay member from the South, according to his campaign.
“This is a very exciting development for my campaign,” Brandon said in a news release. “And it adds significantly to the momentum that has been steadily building over the last several months. This endorsement has the opportunity to provide a welcome level of national exposure.”
The 12th District is heavily Democratic territory. President Barack Obama carried the district with 79 percent in 2012. The contest is expected to be decided in the Democratic primary.
Watt has yet to resign his seat, so officials have not scheduled the special-election dates yet. However sources with knowledge of election laws in North Carolina expect the dates to coincide with previously scheduled primaries for the midterms.
North Carolina’s 12th District is rated a Safe Democratic contest by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.