On Monday, Democrat Kyrsten Sinema became the first woman to be elected senator in Arizona — and the first openly bisexual member of Congress ever — when she defeated Republican Martha McSally in a remarkable upset victory. Sinema, a former social worker and Green Party spokesperson who was previously elected to the House as a Democrat in 2012, also became the first Democratic senator to serve the state in a quarter-century. In a concession speech posted on Twitter, McSally congratulated her opponent on “becoming Arizona’s first female senator after a hard-fought battle.”
Congrats to @kyrstensinema. I wish her success. I’m grateful to all those who supported me in this journey. I’m inspired by Arizonans’ spirit and our state’s best days are ahead of us. pic.twitter.com/tw0uKgi3oO
— McSally For Senate (@MarthaMcSally) November 13, 2018
Addressing reporters on Monday night, Sinema echoed the bipartisan promise of Arizona’s late Republican Senator John McCain, declaring that she would always “put country over party.”
“Arizona proved that there is a better way forward,” said Sinema. “We can work with people who are different than us, we can be friends with people who are different than us, we can love and care about people who are different than us, we can keep people who are different than us safe. We can be good people who care deeply about each other even when we disagree.”
While McSally appears to have accepted the results of the narrow and hotly-contested race, President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Friday to claim “electoral corruption” and call for a new election to “protect our Democracy.” While it was unclear what factual basis the president had to support such a wild accusation, some speculated that he was referring to a lawsuit filed by the Arizona GOP that moved to omit ballots verified after election day from the final vote. The lawsuit, which did not contain any claims of “electoral corruption” or fraud, but instead was based on a supposed need to standardize the mail-in ballot system, was dismissed by a judge on Thursday.
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