Washington D.C. – Sara Gideon, an Armenian-American politician has won the Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate seat in Maine and will face incumbent Republican Senator Susan Collins in the November elections.
Gideon is currently the Speaker of the Maine State Assembly. She had long been the favorite to challenge Senator Collins, the sole remaining New England Republican in Congress.
Daughter of an Indian-American father and second-generation Armenian mother, Gideon has already attracted the attention of the entire Democratic Party from across the nation and has raised a massive $23 million, a record for the state of Maine.
Democrats are pinning a great deal of hope on Gideon to get them a majority in the Senate.
“Thank you, Maine, for choosing me as your candidate to take on Senator Collins in November,” Gideon declared soon after her massive electoral victory.
Gideon, the youngest of four children, grew up in Rhode Island. She graduated from East Greenwich High School in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, in 1989. In 1994, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs in Washington, D.C. She served as an intern for U.S. Senator Claiborne Pell.
She moved to Maine after meeting her husband Ben Gideon, a personal injury trial lawyer.
If elected in November, she will be the first Armenian-American and second Indian-American woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate.
Today, on the 105th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, we remember all the lives that were lost. As the granddaughter of Armenian refugees, I hold this day as a solemn reminder that we must continue our work to protect human rights.
— Sara Gideon (@SaraGideon) April 24, 2020
Within the Maine State Assembly, Gideon backed Maine’s recognition of Artsakh’s independence, and has been a constant supporter of Armenian-American issues.
According to the local Bangor Daily News, both candidates are likely to be in the national spotlight as Maine is considered a pivotal state for Republicans looking to hold onto the Senate and Collins has become a target for progressives who argue the Senator, long seen as a moderate, has failed to adequately stand up to President Donald Trump.
“Tonight, I am one step closer,” in reference to achieving the goal for which she is running the election, Gideon said in a Facebook live telecast Tuesday night.
A broken Washington has failed to take action to address the coronavirus pandemic, she said and alleged that her rival, Senator Collins, has become part of the establishment.
“Mainers deserve a Senator who brings people together,” Gideon said and promised to work with everyone and anyone to get things done.
“I’m running for Senate today because I know we can take on our toughest issues and work together to ensure that everyone has access to health care that is excellent and affordable,” she said.
“To build an economy that truly works for everyone, putting the interests of working families and small businesses first. To invest in ourselves. And to finally tackle special interests’ influence in our politics and return our government to the people,” she added.
“And as President Trump continues to divide our country, we remember all of the times when Senator Collins enabled and excused his attacks on our democracy,” she said.
The US is facing unprecedented challenges right now. The coronavirus pandemic continues to threaten the health, safety, and economy of America.
A broken Washington fails to take action because politicians put special interests and partisan politics before the people they’re supposed to represent, Gideon said.
The U.S. is the worst-hit country by the COVID-19 pandemic. The virus has infected more than 3.4 million people in the country and killed over 130,000, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
“If we are going to come together and make real progress to improve the lives of people here in Maine and across the country, then we need new leadership,” she said.