Zach Wahls To Run For Iowa State Senate

Zach Wahls To Run For Iowa State Senate
Totally fan-boying out with Zach Wahls

I will never forget the first time (or the many, many other times) I watched Zach Wahls thoughtful, moving, pro-marriage equality speech before the Iowa House Judiciary Committee, back in 2011.

Stepping up to defend marriage equality, he spoke eloquently of his two mothers and his childhood:

“I’m not really so different from any of your children. My family really isn’t so different from yours. After all, your family doesn’t derive its sense of worth from being told by the state, ‘You’re married—congratulations!’ No, the sense of family comes from the commitment we make to each other, to work through the hard times so we can enjoy the good ones; it comes from the love that binds us. That’s what makes a family.”

What happened next was the very definition of “viral video;” millions and millions of views on YouTube.

The Advocate called it “the most popular political video of 2011.”

In 2012, the handsome 20-eyar-old Wahls released his book, My Two Moms: Lessons of Love, Strength, and What Makes a Family.

Short story – I was with my husband Michael in New York City as he was on a publicity tour with his client, Olivia Newton-John.

We were leaving CNN where Olivia had just done an interview about her latest album, and walking down the hallway to the elevators, I see Zach Wahls walking towards us. He was on a promo tour for his book.

I dropped everything I was carrying and totally fan-boyed out. I explained to Michael and Olivia who he was, his speech, and just a lot of blathering blah blah blah. #EmbarrassingButAHugeFan

Zach was very charming, reaching for a book and autographing it to me. His mothers, seeing and recognizing Olivia, stood back and watched this whole moment unfold.

Eventually, we all took pictures and went on our separate ways.

In the elevator, Olivia laughed telling me she had never seen me so animated or excited in all the years she knew me.

Zach Wahls To Run For Iowa State Senate
Zach Wahls with Olivia Newton-John and his mothers

Zach went on to serve as co-chair for “The Outspoken Generation,” a Family Equality Council initiative that gave the children of gay and lesbian parents a platform to speak out in support of their upbringing.

He also helped launch Scouts for Equality, an advocacy group that sought to challenge the Boy Scouts of America’s ban on gay and lesbian scout leaders.

And then there is his stirring speech at the Democratic National Convention, where he thanked President Obama for his support of same-sex marriage.

Fast forward to now and Zach has announced that he is running for state Senate in Iowa’s 37th District.

The 26-year-old will soon graduate with a master’s degree in public policy from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Hello? Princeton University? No slacker here.

I’ll totally be contributing to his campaign.

If you’ve never seen it, you must watch 19-year-old Zach Wahl’s speech in February 2011.

I can’t tell you how moved I was when I saw this. This guy is a political star.