Laphonza Butler, Newsom’s Feinstein replacement, to make LGBT history

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10/02/2023

The woman chosen by Gov. Gavin Newsom to replace late Sen. Dianne Feinstein will be the first Black lesbian to serve in Congress in history and the first openly LGBT senator from California, his office said Sunday night. Laphonza Butler has been selected to complete Feinstein’s term, who died Friday at the age of 90 after serving in the US Senate from 1992 until her death. Butler is the president of the political action committee Emily’s List, which works to elect Democratic women. Once appointed senator, she will step down from that roll, Newsom’s office said. She was also a longtime senior advisor to Vice President Kamala Harris, as well as a labor leader.

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