Democratic nominee Sarah McBride elected first openly transgender US senator

"I hope tonight shows an LGBTQ kid that our democracy is big enough for them, too"

Transgender rights champion Sarah McBride has made history after becoming the first trans woman ever elected to a state senate.

McBride secured victory in the race for the Delaware senate on Tuesday (November 3), making her the first trans person to ever hold office in a state’s upper chamber.

She defeated Republican Steve Washington to take over the seat from Democrat Harris McDowell, who is standing down.

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McBride is the press secretary of LGBT advocacy group the Human Rights Campaign, as well as previously serving as a trainee in the White House during the Obama administration.

While a small selection of transgender politicians sit in state legislatures, McBride’s victory marks the first time that a transgender politician has held federal or statewide office anywhere in the United States.

“We did it. We won the general election. Thank you, thank you, thank you,” McBride wrote on Twitter after her victory.

“I hope tonight shows an LGBTQ kid that our democracy is big enough for them, too,” she added.

“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,” Annise Parker, CEO of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, said in a statement.

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“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 favour of candidates who stand for fairness and equality.”

McBride previously made headlines in 2016 when she became the first transgender person to give a speech at the Democratic National Convention.

At the time of writing, Trump is narrowly losing to his Democratic rival Joe Biden in the race for the White House, but has scooped victory in key states including Texas and Florida.

It is expected that it could take until Friday for a final result to be confirmed, with Trump already announcing a premature victory and calling for Supreme Court action to stop further votes from being counted.

Earlier in the night, both Twitter and Facebook flagged posts by the President after he claimed that the Democrats were “trying to steal the election”.

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