Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) — the country's first openly bisexual senator — took her oath of office on Thursday by placing her hand on a copy of the U.S. Constitution, and not the Bible.
What are the details?
Vice President Mike Pence, who swore Sinema in as a U.S. senator, ended his part of the ceremony with " ... so help you God?"
Sinema responded, "I do."
A spokesperson for Sinema told the Arizona Republic that the newly minted senator, who previously served as a U.S. representative, is "always sworn in on Constitution."
"Kyrsten always gets sworn in on a Constitution simply because of her love for the Constitution," the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson added that the book was from the Library of Congress and contained texts of the United States and Arizona state constitutions.
.@SenatorSinema sworn in by @VP. https://t.co/uIBiIhqqXF pic.twitter.com/TYWVHujtHm
— The Hill (@thehill) January 3, 2019
A recent release from the Pew Research Center reported Sinema is the one member of Congress who is "religiously unaffiliated."
At just over 88 percent, the overwhelming majority of those serving in the U.S. Congress identify as Christians.
Hemant Mehta at the Friendly Athiest lauded Sinema's decision to be sworn in on the U.S. Constitution.
"To be sure, Sinema isn't an open atheist, and there were a lot of books other than the Bible this year for newly elected members of Congress," Mehta wrote.
"But it's still nice to see a government official show people that her allegiance is to our country and our laws, not a holy book or the Ten Commandments," Mehta added. "Sinema did the same thing in 2013 when she was first sworn into Congress."