Republican Katie Britt has made history by becoming the first woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate from Alabama.
The self-described 40-year-old “mama on a mission” is projected by Fox News’ Decision Desk to defeat Democrat Will Boyd after, so far, capturing around two thirds of the vote.
“You are going to see headlines about me being the first woman ever elected to the United States Senate from this state of Alabama. You’ll hear that I may be the youngest Republican woman in history elected to the U.S. Senate,” Britt told supporters in Montgomery. “Or maybe that I’m the only Republican female with school-aged children in this Senate — these are all kinds of firsts.”
“I am humbled, I am honored and grateful. I want you to know I understand what a tremendous responsibility these milestones carry and I do not take that lightly,” she added.
“We have far too many politicians in Washington that only want to gripe about things and do nothing to actually solve the problems,” Britt also said. “What I want you to hear from me tonight is that I want to be part of the solution. It’s not lost on me that that’s likely why Alabama is sending a momma to the U.S. Senate – you know to actually get things done.”
Britt will fill the seat held by Richard Shelby, her one-time boss who is retiring after 35 years in the Senate. Britt was Shelby’s chief of staff before leaving to take the helm of a state business lobby. The state’s previous female senators, both Democrats, had been appointed.
Britt ran under the banner of “Alabama First” and secured the GOP nomination after a heated primary. She was first in the initial round of voting and then defeated six-term Rep. Mo Brooks in a primary runoff.
Brooks, who ran under the banner “MAGA Mo” — Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan — and was initially endorsed by the former president, had been an early favorite in the race. However, Brooks faltered under a barrage of attack ads and lackluster fundraising. As Britt surged in the polls, Trump rescinded his endorsement of Brooks and shifted his support to Britt.
Britt began her political career working for Shelby. She thanked the outgoing senior senator for taking a chance on her 20 years ago and called him “Alabama’s greatest statesman” who left a lasting legacy on the state.
“I am going to tackle challenges head on,” Britt told supporters Tuesday. “I am going to look at the things staring us in the face, whether it is inflation or crime, the border crisis, the opioid epidemic, making sure that we expand mental health and that people have access to high-speed Internet. I am going to support peace through strength, ensuring that our incredible men and women in uniform are the best equipped, resourced and trained in the world.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.