LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD called on presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke to address the nomination of Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson to be UTEP’s next president.
The group tweeted at the El Paso Democrat Friday morning, asking him to “speak out“ on Wilson’s anti-gay voting record as a New Mexico congresswoman.
Hey @BetoORourke – Heather Wilson is in consideration to be hired as president of University of Texas at El Paso, in your hometown. She has a long anti-LGBTQ record, which is troubling to LGBTQ students and allies at the school.
Will you speak out? https://t.co/t7eO7rFoRG— GLAAD (@glaad) March 22, 2019
KTSM 9 News reached out to the O’Rourke campaign and is awaiting comment.
Also on Friday, the Texas Democratic Party issued a statement against Wilson and asked University of Texas System Chancellor James B. Milliken to rescind Wilson’s nomination.
Party spokesperson Marco Antonio Orrantia wrote in part:
“As an El Paso native, U.S. Army Iraq War combat veteran, and gay Texan, I can undoubtedly say El Paso is the warmest and most welcoming city in the United States… The next president of the University of Texas El Paso should reflect the inclusive values El Pasoans hold dear and meet the high bar set by Diana Natalicio’s exemplary three decades of public service as President.“
On Thursday, UTEP student protesters turned in a petition with roughly 9,300 signatures at the office of U.T. Regent and local billionaire Paul Foster.
Wilson is slated to speak with students and faculty after spring break, according to University officials.
During a visit to campus last week, Wilson said when it comes to LGBTQ matters, she treats “everyone with dignity and respect.“