Former SG President is set to become a Delaware state senator

Sarah McBride would be the first openly transgender state senator in the U.S.

Former SG President is set to become a Delaware state senator

AU alum Sarah McBride speaks at the Democratic National Convention on July 28. 

Sarah McBride, an American University alumna and former Student Government president, is expected to become the country’s first openly transgender state senator after winning her Delaware Senate Democratic primary race in September.

McBride overwhelmingly won in the primary, and given the makeup of her district, she is a heavy favorite to win the seat in November. 

“The best way that I can do justice by the LGBTQ community is to do right by my district, and to work my heart out and to be the best state senator I can be for every single resident of the first senate district. That's how I honor and uphold the responsibility I have to the broader LGBTQ+ community,” said McBride, in an interview with The Eagle.  

Democrat Harris McDowell III, the longest-serving legislator in Delaware history, is retiring and endorsed McBride.  

“This moment calls for a politics that is centering our people and our communities and that is really focused on the issues that matter most to people and making progress on them,” McBride said. “I think that we have a responsibility to feed this moment with full action that makes a real difference in our family's lives.”

Her campaign has been focused on health care, paid family and medical leave and education. If elected, she said her immediate priority would be to get her state through the coronavirus crisis. 

“This campaign has reinforced for me that people are hungry for conversations in our politics that are rooted in kindness and compassion, and it's reinforced for me the desire for change and progress. The desire for progress on issues ranging from better health care to education to the environment,” McBride said. 

Despite the historic nature of her campaign, McBride emphasized that her gender is not the focus of her campaign. 

“I’m not running to be a transgender state senator, I’m not running to make headlines,” McBride said. “I’m running to make a difference in my community.” 

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, McBride’s campaign did a lot of door-knocking and face-to-face interaction with voters. Despite now having to virtually interact with voters, she said her campaign has not slowed down, and she is still able to have meaningful conversations with voters.

She said, being a millennial herself, she has also made it a priority to engage with and listen to young voters throughout the course of her campaign. 

“It means making sure that when we're talking to voters, we're actually including young voters in that universe and that we're truly, meaningfully, listening to young voters as we are having those conversations with voters across the district,” McBride said. 

While Democrats outnumber Republicans more than 3-to-1 in Delaware’s first senate district, McBride said she is not taking any chances. 

“I'm not taking anything for granted. I am working my heart out over the next few weeks to talk to as many voters as possible," McBride said. "Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike, we're leaving no stone unturned.”

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