Levi Rickert, editor-in-chief in Native Currents. Discussion »
FLAGSTAFF, ARIZONA Navajo Wenona Benally Baldenegro was defeated in her first run for US Congress in Arizona's first Congressional District by former Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick.
The votes with 99.1 percent of the ballots counted are:
29,952 for Kirkpatrick and
16,782 for Baldenegro.
“I certainly want to thank those who voted for me,”
Baldenegro told the Native News Network on Wednesday.
“I appreciate the tribal support in Indian country. I know if we want to get more American Indians elected, somebody has to take the leap and get in the trenches to pave the way for others to run.”
This race was Baldenegro's first run for public office. She has a law degree from Harvard University. Had she won the primary and gone on to victory in November, she would have been the first American Indian woman ever elected to Congress. Less than 10 American Indians have ever been elected to Congress. Currently, Congressman Tom Cole, R-Oklahoma, is the only American Indian serving in Congress.
While she is still feeling the sting of defeat today, she does not know what her future holds for her in terms of running for elective office again.
“I know this is only the beginning,”
she told the Native News Network.
posted August 29, 2012 7:00 am edt