State Watch

Delaware’s Sarah McBride to become nation’s first trans state senator

Sarah McBride (D) is projected to win a seat in the Delaware state Senate, making her the first out trans state senator in the U.S.

McBride, a Wilmington native and currently national press secretary at the Human Rights Campaign, is slated to defeat Republican candidate Steve Washington to replace outgoing state Sen. Harris McDowell (D).

“Sarah’s overwhelming victory is a powerful testament to the growing influence of transgender leaders in our politics and gives hope to countless trans people looking toward a brighter future,” former Houston, Texas Mayor Annise Parker, president and CEO of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, said in a statement.

“Throughout this election cycle, Donald Trump and other cynical politicians attempted to use trans people as a political weapon, believing they could gain popularity by stoking fear and hate. For Sarah to shatter a lavender ceiling in such a polarizing year is a powerful reminder that voters are increasingly rejecting the politics of bigotry in favor of candidates who stand for fairness and equality. Her victory will inspire more trans people to follow in her footsteps and run for public office,” she added.

“Tonight, Sarah made history not just for herself but for our entire community. She gives a voice to the marginalized as a representative and an advocate,” Alphonso David, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said in a statement. “This victory, the first of what I expect to be many in her career, shows that any person can achieve their dream, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation. Though we will miss having her as an employee at the Human Rights Campaign, Sarah will undoubtedly represent the First District well and we look forward to seeing what she accomplishes.”

McBride’s potential win comes three years after Virginia Delegate Danica Roem (D) unseated Delegate Bob Marshall (R), becoming the nation’s first out trans lawmaker.

LGBTQ Victory Fund has also endorsed four other trans legislature candidates for open seats: Stephanie Byers in Kansas, Madeline Eden in Texas, Jessica Katzenmeyer in Wisconsin and Taylor Small in Vermont. Small’s race has already been called in her favor, according to the group.

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