By: KIANA McDONALD
On November 3rd, Delaware elected Sarah McBride as their state senator, the first transgender woman to hold such a position. Democrat McBride won against Republican candidate and opponent Steve Washington. Steve Washington believes in unity for change, “I wish McBride well and hope she does a great job in office. We need to come together as a country”, he told CNN. According to The Delaware Department of Elections, she won with an overwhelming 73% of votes. A majority of her votes came from a massively Democratic district running from northern Willington up to the Pennsylvania border.
Although transgender men and women have been elected into great government positions of power throughout the United States, McBride is the first transgender state senator as well as Delaware’s first out LGBTQ+ person elected to the state’s legislature.
“As a newly elected state senator, it is now my job to stand in that chamber and to fight for opportunity and dignity for every single one of my neighbors. I do so with the hope and knowledge that change is possible because I’ve seen it, I’ve fought it, and I’ve lived it”, Sarah tweeted after the election.
McBride is the woman of “firsts”, for she was also the first transgender person to speak at a major party convention. At the 2016 Democratic National Convention, she spoke out about discrimination that LGBTQ+ people face, and expressed her passion for making America’s LGBTQ+ community as safe and inclusive as possible. “Will we be a nation where there’s only one way to love, one way to look, one way to live? Or, will we be a nation where everyone has the freedom to live openly and equally?”, she questioned during her powerful speech at the convention. She was was also the first openly transgender person to work at the White House as an intern during Obama’s presidency. Sarah’s website reads, “she has been involved in progressive and community advocacy for most of her life, including working for former Governor Jack Markell, Attorney General Beau Biden, and in the Obama White House.” She says that when she publicly came out as transgender, Joe Biden, projected winner of the United States Presidential election, told her, “Beau is so proud of you”.
Being the first transgender State Senator in US History is a huge step towards change, and members of the LGBTQ+ community see Sarah as an icon. They are confident that this memorable election will encourage future transgender people to trust that their sexual orientation and identity cannot make any dream too big.