Culture TED Fellows

TED Fellow elected to U.S. House of Representatives

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You can start referring to TED Fellow Kyrsten Sinema as Congresswoman. In a race that took nearly a week to call, Sinema has been elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for Arizona’s 9th congressional district, which wraps around Phoenix. Though the race remained close through midday Monday, Sinema — a Democrat — was declared the victor over Republican candidate Vernon Parker by a margin of 6,000 votes.

Sinema has served in the Arizona state legislature for seven years, while getting her Ph.D. in political science and working hard as a human rights activist and LGBT leader. In fact, Sinema’s election brings with it a first — she will be the first openly bisexual member of Congress.

“We’ve made history, and we’re proud of that,” Sinema told today. “But what I am interested in is making history by making things better for the people of Arizona’s 9th Congressional District. I’m just humbled and excited to start working for the people of Arizona.”

Tonight, Sinema was recognized by Chelsea Clinton at the Glamour magazine Women of the Year Awards in New York City. In October, the magazine asked Sinema what she thought was the most important issue facing young women today. She answered, “Their right to make personal health care decisions. The Supreme Court is at tipping point and if a liberal jurist retires and a President Romney is in office to appoint a conservative, millions of American women could lose access to birth control and their right to make decisions on what’s best for their health and their family.”