An openly gay man who frequently wears high heels was elected mayor of Del Rio on Saturday, May 5.
First-time candidate Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano, 35, captured 62 percent of the vote, defeating incumbent Robert Garza, according to the Del Rio News-Herald. Del Rio is a city of about 40,000 along Texas’ border with Mexico, 150 miles west of San Antonio.
Lozano’s penchant for wearing high heels led to attacks on social media calling him a “faggot with AIDS,” according to a recent report from IntoMore.com.
Lozano will be Del Rio’s first LGBTQ elected official, and the youngest person to serve as the city’s mayor. He ran on a platform of change and believes Del Rio can be a positive example for the border, where people have been demonized by President Donald Trump.
“We don’t have this war zone going on,” Lozano said. “It’s beautiful down here.”
Lozano is an Air Force veteran who chose not to re-enlist because of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the ban on open service that was repealed under President Barack Obama.
“Stonewall happened because drag queens and a minority group stood up to animosity, and I had to go back in the closet because of that same hatred,” Lozano told IntoMore.com. “I know what that was like, and it translates to today’s campaign. I’m not going to bow down. I am who I am. Accept me or not.”
Lozano is the first to claim victory among the 52 LGBTQ candidates in Texas this year, which is by far the most in the state’s history.•