The Cable

Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto Takes Nevada Senate Seat

Catherine Cortez Masto becomes first Latina senator in U.S. history.

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Tuesday night saw very little good news for Hillary Clinton and U.S. Democrats, but it did have a silver lining for Catherine Cortez Masto. She just became the first Latina senator in U.S. history.

The former Democratic state attorney general beat GOP Rep. Joe Heck, Congress’s highest-ranking soldier. Masto, for her part, worked on terrorism and transnational crime as her state’s attorney general.

Heck cited “changing demographics” as the explanation for why the Senate race was so close for so much of the election. Those changing demographics were not enough for many Democrats in much of America on Tuesday.

But in Nevada, they likely helped elect a senator who didn’t break the hardest, highest glass ceiling, but who nevertheless became a first.

Photo credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Emily Tamkin is a staff writer at Foreign Policy covering ambassadorial and diplomatic affairs in Washington. @emilyctamkin

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