These Ballroom Legends Want You to Bring It to the Polls

"Darling, you have to understand, I am the vote."

The presidential election is the biggest function of the year, and these ballroom icons won’t let you be late.

Vogueing legends from the Houses of Balenciaga, Garçon, Gorgeous Gucci, and Miyake-Mugler have joined forces for “I’m the Vote,” a new campaign encouraging LGBTQ Black or indigenous people of color (BIPOC) to cast their ballots in November. The initiative launched earlier this week with a short film starring Sinia Alaia. It also features voiceover work from Paris Is Burning icon Junior LaBejia, who walks potential voters through the step-by-step process of registering to vote, requesting a ballot by mail, and casting your ballot by mail or IRL at an early voting site.

“I know this sounds so drastic and so ’I’ve been there before,’ but darling, you have to understand, I am the vote,” LaBeija says in the video.


The initiative was conceptualized for Unilever and When We All Vote by RanaVerse, an LGBTQ-led creative agency that develops social-impact campaigns for major brands. It’s ongoing until Election Day on November 3, with a Phase 2 launching soon to help LGBTQ BIPOC develop individualized voting plans and make their votes count.

In a statement provided to NewNowNext, Mita Mallick, head of diversity and inclusion for Unilever North America, said the company was proud to highlight “the creativity and vibrancy of the house and ballroom communities”:

There’s never been a more important time to ensure all voices are heard, including the voices of the LGBTQ+ community. With more than 20% of LGBTQ+ adults not registered to vote, Unilever is supporting nonpartisan organizations that are providing registration and voting information to help ensure everyone within our communities are able to vote safely and fairly.

As NewNowNext determined last year, any Democratic candidate could feasibly beat President Donald Trump if all unregistered LGBTQ Americans who are eligible to vote registered.

Watch the full “I’m the Vote” campaign video below—and dear God, if you haven’t figured out a game plan to cast your ballot safely this election cycle, what are you doing?!

I'm The Vote – starring Sinia Alaia from RANAVERSE on Vimeo.

Brooklyn-based writer and editor. Probably drinking iced coffee or getting tattooed.