Republican Winsome Sears made history by becoming the first woman and first woman of color to both be elected as Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, and win any statewide election.
“I’m telling you that what you are looking at is the American dream,” Sears said during her victory speech.
Sears, elected as the first woman of color to the position, warned against the racial divide narrative pushed by Democrat leaders, saying, “There are some who want to divide us, and we must not let that happen.”
“There are some who want to divide us, and we must not let that happen. They would like to believe we are back in 1963 when my father came,” Sears said. “We can live where we want. We can eat where we want. We own the water fountains. We have had a black president elected not only once but twice. And here I am, living proof. In case you didn’t notice, I am black and have been black all my life.”
Sears, a Marine Corps veteran who came to the U.S. as a young child, revealed she was “still a Jamaican” when she joined the Marine Corps but was “willing to die for this country.”
“When I joined the Marine Corps, I was still a Jamaican. But this country had done so much for me, I was willing, willing, to die for this country,” Sears proudly affirmed as she led the crowd into a “USA” chant.
“What we are going to do now is be about the business of the Commonwealth,” Sears said. “We have things to tend to. We are going to fully fund our historically Black colleges and universities. We’re going to have safer neighborhoods, safer communities, and our children are going to get a good education.”
Sears formally served as vice president of the Virginia State Board of Education and as director of a women’s homeless shelter, according to Business Insider. Sears, who campaigned on lower taxes, job creation, and stronger school education, defeated Democratic candidate Hala Ayala.
Sears ran alongside Virginia’s new governor-elect, Republican Glenn Youngkin, and new Attorney General-elect, Republican Jason Miyares.