Pence Swears In First Bisexual Senator—to Replace Flake

By Staff | January 4, 2019 | 1:57 PM EST

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-.Ariz.) as she prepares to take the oath of office administered by Vice President Mike Pence, Jan. 3, 2018. (Screen Capture)

( - Vice President Mike Pence yesterday politely administered the oath of office to Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D.-Ariz.), who was elected in November to replace Sen. Jeff Flake (R.-Ariz.), who did not seek reelection.

Sinema, who is unmarried, is the first openly bisexual member of the United States Senate. Raised a Mormon, she now professes no religion.

When Sinema came to the front of the Old Senate Chamber in the U.S. Capitol to take the oath of office, Vice President Pence said to her: “Congratulations. ... My great honor. ... I look forward to working with you a little bit.”

She then asked the vice president where she should stand while taking the oath, and as Pence advised her on this matter, she suddenly declared—perhaps in response to some unheard person in the audience: “Could we get a spouse?”

As Pence laughs, she then says: "Just kidding. Just kidding."

After she had taken the oath, Pence said again: “Congratulations. I look forward to working with you.”

In response to a question that Sinema asks him that cannot be heard on the C-SPAN video, Pence says: “It is very humbling. More than I could tell you. It really is."

“So, congratulations to you,” Pence said again. “I look forward to working with you.”

In a profile published in November, the New York Times summarized Sinema’s political career as follows:

“Ms. Sinema finished last in her first campaign in 2002 for a seat in the Arizona House of Representatives as an independent affiliated with the Green Party. But she switched to the Democratic Party in 2004 and won a seat in the state legislature. Ms. Sinema began showing an independent streak, speaking openly about her sexuality--she will be the first openly bisexual member of Congress--and her belief in secular government. While Ms. Sinema was raised in a Mormon family, she now ascribes to no religion.”


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