Top Dem moments of 2012: First openly gay woman to serve in US Senate

Updated
By msnbc staff
Experts gave U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) good odds at winning the Wisconsin race for Senate against former Governor, Tommy Thompson.
Experts gave U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) good odds at winning the Wisconsin race for Senate against former Governor, Tommy Thompson.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

In 2010, the Wisconsin Supreme Court voted to uphold the state’s constitutional ban on gay marriage and civil unions. But just two years later, the Badger State became the first in the nation to elect an openly gay woman to serve in U.S. Senate.

Tammy Baldwin made history on Election Day, defeating a Republican with a prolific legacy in her state, four-term Gov. Tommy Thompson.

“I’m well aware that I will have the honor to be the first woman senator from Wisconsin. And I’m well aware that I will be the first openly gay member of the United States Senate,” Baldwin said in her acceptance speech on election night.

“I didn’t run to make history,” she said. “I ran to make a difference—a difference in the lives of families struggling to find work and pay the bills, a difference in the lives of students worried about debt and seniors worried about their retirement security, a difference in the lives of veterans who fought for us and need someone fighting for them and their families when they return home from war, a difference in the lives of entrepreneurs trying to build a business and working people trying to build some economic security.”

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Top Dem moments of 2012: First openly gay woman to serve in US Senate

Updated