Democratic Rep. Krystin Sinema has won a key victory for her party in Arizona, taking the Senate seat being vacated by retiring GOP Senator Jeff Flake as her Republican challenger Martha McSally conceded.
This marks the first time Democrats have held a Senate seat in Arizona in 30 years.
As the tight contest for the Senate seat in Arizona was still counting votes a week later, the latest count showed that Republican Martha McSally was trailing Democratic Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema by over 38,000 votes.
In Arizona, about three-fourths of the ballots are cast by mail and as new ballots came in, the lead continued to increase and Sinema’s favor.
The upcoming Senate seats now stand at 51 Republicans and 47 Democrats, with Florida’s Senate race still undecided. A runoff for the Mississippi Senate race will occur on November 27.
After an announcement was made that the race had been called in her favor, Sinema posted a “Thank you, Arizona!” graphic on Twitter, writing that “I’ll be an independent voice for all Arizonans. Thank you, Arizona. Let’s get to work.”
Republicans may have less to worry about than they think. As Sinema announced a pledge to be “an independent voice for all Arizonans,” her voting record in the House of Representatives seems to reflect her words.
Serving as a state representative for six years, Sinema has one of the most centrist records in the Democratic caucus. In fact, 60 percent of the time, she has voted for bills that were backed by Trump. She has also backed legislation which has sought to increase penalties against people who have committed crimes after entering the country illegally.
Sinema, who is a three-term Congresswoman, becomes the state’s first Democrat to hold a Senate seat in the state of Arizona since 1988.
Sinema achieved two firsts in winning her seat in the Senate. She will become the first openly bisexual Senator in United States history, she was also the first bisexual representative of Congress when she was elected in 2013. For Arizona, she will become the first female the state has elected to the Senate ever.