Almost a week after Election Day, Kyrsten Sinema was finally declared the winner in the House of Representatives race for Arizona’s Ninth District, becoming the first openly bisexual member of Congress.
On Monday afternoon, the Associated Press called the race for Sinema, who garnered 48.1% of the vote compared to Republican opponent Vernon Parker, who had 45.4%. The announcement was delayed because the margin was so close, but Sinema pulled out a victory after more than 6,000 absentee and provisional ballots were counted.
“I am grateful for the honor and the opportunity to serve the people of Arizona again,” Sinema said in a statement Monday night. “The voters have given us a clear ‘to do’ list – work to fix our economy, reduce our ballooning debt and better protect the middle class. I am eager to get to work and I intend to team up with anyone of any party who is willing to help change Congress and move our country forward.”
She has already served in both the Arizona House and Senate, where she was an ardent supporter of LGBT rights and fought a ban on same-sex marriage. She also served as a member of HRC’s Arizona Steering Committee.
When the 113th Congress is sworn in next year, she will joing the largest class of LGBT legislators in Washington, DC, including fellow Representatives David Cicilline (D-RI) and Jared Polis (D-CO), Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY), Mark Pocan (D-WI) and Mark Takano (D-CA), and Senator Tammy Brown (D-WI).