Although all was quiet on the Illinois front regarding elections Nov. 5 ( with marriage equality standing front and center statewide ), voters made their voices heard in political races in various other cities and states.
In Virginia's gubernatorial race, Democrat Terry McAuliffe defeated Republican Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli in what turned out to be a nailbiter ( 47 percent to 46 percent ), according to CBS News. Among other things, Cuccinelli campaigned to defend Virginia's anti-sodomy law, launching a new website meant to scare parents into believing the law would protect children, Advocate.com noted.
The other governor's race saw New Jersey's Chris Christie easily winning re-election. Christie's victory makes him the only Republican governor considering the presidency and serving with a Democratic legislature, according to a Minneapolis Star-Tribune item.
Also, Bill De Blasio was elected New York City's first Democratic mayor in two decades. With 99 percent of precincts reporting, De Blasio had 73 percent of the vote compared with 24 percent for Republican Joe Lhota, former chief of the metropolitan area's transit agency.
Lesbian Annise Parker won re-election for a third and final term as Houston's mayor, according to KTRK.com . Hall's concession came after only 8 percent of precincts reported Parker had taken 50 percent of the votes. However, as more votes were counted, Parker's lead continued to grow.
Parker was first elected in 2009. She won her second term in 2011 after holding off five challengers. Term limits prevent Parker from running for a fourth term.
In addition, Ed Murray appeared to win his race, becoming Seattle's first gay mayor, ABC News noted. Murray is a longtime state lawmaker who for years led efforts to legalize gay marriage in the state.
Atlantic City, N.J., has a gay mayor as well: Republican Don Guardian, who defeated incumbent Lorenzo Langford, according to Press of Atlantic City. Unofficial results from the Atlantic County Clerk's Office showed Guardian with 3,066 votes to 2,904 for Langford, with all 21 districts reporting. Guardian joked during his speech about his partner, Louis Fatato, bringing him back to normal by having him cook and clean.
In Michigan, Royal Oak voters approved a human rights ordinance banning discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation and other factors, making the Oakland County community the 30th municipality in the state to add such a law to its books, according to the Detroit Free Press. According to the Oakland County Elections Division, 53.96 percent of voters favored the proposal. A similar ballot measure failed in 2001 by a two-to-one margin.