Ritchie Torres never thought he'd be elected to Congress when he was a child. Now he's going to Washington D.C., having been elected to represent New York's 15th district in the House of Representatives.
Torres will be the first openly gay, Afro-Latinx person elected to Congress.
While it's been a difficult process to get to the point where he can serve his nation in Congress, Torres still has plenty of hurdles to contend with.
Such as a MAGA supporter yelling at him.
About an hour ago, I was traveling from the Capitol to the Hyatt hotel when a MAGA demonstrator, screaming from a m… https://t.co/tDA6oWp373— Ritchie Torres (@Ritchie Torres)1605394144.0
However, the new congressman took the incident in stride.
MAGA is no match for the Bronx. #BronxStrong https://t.co/JK6MOibS8k— Ritchie Torres (@Ritchie Torres)1605627195.0
Proud of you, sir. https://t.co/ybqz80TaLt— Tony Paul (@Tony Paul)1605627279.0
And people were very supportive of Torres.
@PalmerReport @RitchieTorres Me too! https://t.co/b8tU6tKYid— Meg C (@Meg C)1605497569.0
@RitchieTorres @sapphiresdust Tell them who you be https://t.co/eYSVZhtKps— Lashanda Walker (@Lashanda Walker)1605397073.0
We had a week-long news cycle about Sarah Sanders being asked to leave a restaurant, but Republicans will face no r… https://t.co/dNiGNkjlfU— Matt McDermott (@Matt McDermott)1605448854.0
@RitchieTorres @McCainSuzanne Congratulations Congressman and sorry that this is America in 2020. Hope that you can help to fix it.— Barbara zimmermann (@Barbara zimmermann)1605396500.0
Despite the moment of hate, Torres is optimistic about his future in Congress.
He told Reuters:
"We're witnessing the collapse of politics as an old boys club, and we're witnessing the embrace of America as a multiracial, multiethnic, inclusive democracy."
It was a more difficult race than expected. While Torres won his district with a comfortable lead and more total votes, it was with a smaller percentage of the votes than his predecessor.
Yet, he's ready to start pushing for more LGBTQ+ protections.
One of the first things he looks forward to supporting is the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act to provide protections to prevent discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
For a man who wants to help protect the people of the United States, you have to wonder how people could possibly attack him.
Unsurprisingly, they still do, but luckily, others online are ready to defend him.
@robert09160618 @RitchieTorres He doesn’t need 5 minutes of fame. He already is someone.— PurpleButterfly (@PurpleButterfly)1605488385.0
@LaRayHamilton @RitchieTorres @RealCandaceO The right has shown extreme tolerance enough & inclusion? How by runnin… https://t.co/J0CKOeNbji— ⭐️President Elect Biden⭐️ (@⭐️President Elect Biden⭐️)1605442535.0
@imjdsharp @RitchieTorres That doesn’t make it ok to call him a “homeboy in a suit” you know damn well that’s full… https://t.co/TKNTYLgcFl— Felicia (@Felicia)1605455869.0
@PostTweetism @commonsense258 @RitchieTorres Actually he’s a congressman elect— liftfork🌹🏳️🌈 (@liftfork🌹🏳️🌈)1605493930.0
Torres has been documenting his travel to Washington and orientation for the new members of Congress. His Twitter account has him reflecting on his journey and the ongoing races still happening across the country.
We'll be keeping our eyes on the new member of the House of Representatives.