WASHINGTON COUNTY, Ark. — In what is stated to be the first for the Bible Belt state of Arkansas, a man who identifies as a woman will sit on the Washington County Quorum Court, the legislative body of the county comprised of officials from 15 districts.
According to reports, Evelyn Rios Stafford received 65% of the vote in his bid to represent District 12, while Republican candidate Todd Crane garnered 35% of the vote.
Candy Clark was the initial Democratic nominee but dropped out in September after suffering a stroke. County Democrats then selected Rios Stafford as the replacement, but Clark’s name remained on the ballot as the paperwork had already been certified.
It is therefore not clear whether voters intentionally selected Rios Stafford, being aware of the new candidate, or thought they were choosing Clark.
“I think it sends a message that no matter who you are, you can succeed in anything you want in life,” Rios Stafford told KNWA-TV of his win. “Your identity and your dreams don’t have to be separate. You can be who you are, and you can achieve your dreams.”
Rios Stafford, 47, is an Emmy Award winning former journalist and currently runs a marketing agency in Fayetteville. He stepped down as commissioner of the Fayetteville Housing Authority to run for justice of the peace, the title for members of the quorum court.
According to the Washington, D.C.-based LGBTQ Victory Fund, which seeks to help elect homosexual and transgender Americans to political offices, Rios Stafford was on the board of the Transgender Law Center for five years and participated in the push to pass Fayetteville’s Civil Rights Ordinance in 2015.
He also was on the board of Northwest Arkansas Equality, which organizes the largest “LGBT” Pride event in the state.
Rios Stafford now plans to address issues such as housing, jail overcrowding and the county budget in his position on the quorum court.
As previously reported, while some view transgenderism and gender confusion as a medical condition, Christians believe the matter is also, at its root, a spiritual issue and a result of mankind’s fallen state.
The Bible teaches that all are born with the Adamic sin nature, having various inherent feelings and inclinations that are contrary to the law of God, and being utterly incapable of changing by themselves.
It is why Jesus came: to “save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).
Scripture outlines that Jesus came to be the propitiation for men’s sins (1 John 2:2; 1 John 4:10), a doctrine in Christianity known as substitutionary atonement, and to save men from the wrath of God for their violations against His law (Romans 4:25, Romans 5:9, Romans 5:16), a doctrine known as justification.
The Bible also teaches about regeneration, as in addition to sparing guilty men from eternal punishment, Christ sent his Holy Spirit to make those who would repent and believe the gospel new creatures in the here and now, with new desires and an ability to do what is pleasing in the sight of God by His indwelling and empowerment (Ezekiel 11:19, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Titus 3:5).
Jesus said that men must be born again, and have their very nature transformed by the Spirit from being in Adam to being in Christ, or they cannot see the Kingdom of God (John 3:3-8).
Ezekiel 36:26-27 states of this inner rebirth, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you, and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put My spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments and do them.”