WILMINGTON, Del. (CBS) — A transgender activist won the Democratic nomination for a state Senate seat in Delaware on Tuesday. Sarah McBride’s win puts her on track to be the nation’s highest-ranking openly transgender elected official.
After speaking at the 2016 Democratic National Convention, McBride got the bug to run for office.
“What was so clear was we needed good people with the right ideas, with the creativity and the energy and the ability to get things done,” McBride said.
McBride made history Tuesday, winning the Delaware primary for the state’s 1st State Senate District. Come November, the activist could make history as the nation’s highest-ranking transgender official.
“It also speaks to the broader development of LGBTQ rights in America,” Lucas Acosta, the national press secretary at the Human Rights Campaign, said, “where a person can be evaluated beyond their identity and really be evaluated for the policies they’re advocating for.”
This isn’t McBride’s first time in the spotlight, being the first transgender person to intern at the White House during President Barack Obama’s 2012 administration and the first transgender person to address a national convention at the 2016 DNC.
Political analyst Sam Hoff believes McBride will continue to make history.
“It’s been a long, hard road and I think she’s an outstanding representative to push things ahead as she has done throughout her career,” Hoff said.
McBride’s grassroots campaign focused on speaking directly to thousands of neighbors and hearing their concerns. It appears they listened. Early results show her earning 93% of absentee and mail-in ballots.
What’s next for McBride?
“I’m energized, I’m excited,” she said. “I’m ready to work my heart out through Nov. 3 to make sure that we win and that we elect Democrats up and down the ballot and send a strong message that this district supports Joe Biden.”
For her state senate seat, McBride’s platform has been motivated by issues close to her heart.
“Affordable health care for every Delawarean,” McBride said. “Good paying jobs with real benefits like paid family and medical leave, strengthing our public schools and reforming our criminal justice system. Those are issues that are personal to me in my own life, they’re personal to me because they’re the issues that I’m hearing about from my neighbors.”
McBride is facing off against Republican Steve Johnson, a Wilmington native, in the general election.