SANTA FE, N.M. — New Mexico has become the first state in history to elect all women of color to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Early Wednesday, the state confirmed victories for incumbent Rep. Deb Haaland, Yvette Herrell and Teresa Leger Fernandez in New Mexico’s three congressional districts.

“Tonight the people of New Mexico have chosen hope over fear, love over hate, community over division,” Haaland wrote on Twitter Tuesday. “Tonight I recommit to fighting for legislation that will guide our nation forward in the areas of climate change, education, racial equality, healthcare and economic justice.”

Haaland, who is an enrolled citizen of the Pueblo of Laguna and identifies as a 35th generation New Mexican, made history in 2018 when she became one of the first Native American congresswomen. The Democrat, who has been vocal on issues such as Indigenous peoples’ rights and environmental justice, won reelection in the state’s 1st Congressional District against Republican challenger Michelle Garcia Holmes.

Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM) speaks at the Frank LaMere Native American Presidential Forum on August 19, 2019 in Sioux City, Iowa.

Republican Herrell, who is a member of the Cherokee nation and former starepresentative in New Mexico’s House, won her challenge against incumbent Democratic Rep. Xochitl Torres Small in the 2nd Congressional District.

Herrell campaigned on being New Mexico’s conservative voice in Congress and has received support from President Donald Trump, among other big-name Republicans.

In this Nov. 4, 2019, file photo, Republican U.S. House hopeful Yvette Herrell of New Mexico waits for a news conference in Albuquerque, N.M., about a GOP challenge to the way the state is counting absentee ballots.
In this Nov. 4, 2019, file photo, Republican U.S. House hopeful Yvette Herrell of New Mexico waits for a news conference in Albuquerque, N.M., about a GOP challenge to the way the state is counting absentee ballots.

“It’s the honor of my life to be elected to serve #NM02,” Herrell wrote on Twitter when announcing her win. “My commitment to each citizen of our district is that I will serve each of them with integrity as we work together to rebuild our economy and protect the values that make America great!”

Finally, in the state’s 3rd Congressional District, Democrat Leger Fernandez beat Republican Alexis Johnson. Leger Fernandez, who was born and raised in northern New Mexico, has decades of experience as an attorney, working specifically as an advocate for the rights of tribes, women, immigrants and Hispanic communities. She will replace Democratic Rep. Ben Ray Luján, who won the state’s open U.S. Senate seat.

Attorney Teresa Leger Fernandez of Santa Fe speaks to Democratic delegates March 7 at a pre-primary convention in Pojoaque, N.M.
Attorney Teresa Leger Fernandez of Santa Fe speaks to Democratic delegates March 7 at a pre-primary convention in Pojoaque, N.M.

“The people of New Mexico have chosen to protect what we love – our democracy, our planet, our families and communities, our health care and our future,” Leger Fernandez wrote on Twitter. “With this victory, I promise you I will take the courageous action that this historic moment demands. Muchísimas gracias!”

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NM becomes first state to elect all women of color to the House





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