When Congress is sworn in on Thursday, it will have a very different – and diverse – line up.

Not only will a record-breaking 20 female senators make up the Senate, but Congress will have a bisexual member, a Buddhist, a Hindu and two female combat veterans for the first time in history.

Another new congresswoman, Kyrsten Sinema, a Democrat from Arizona, has been described as an atheist, but said she simply sees herself as someone who is not part of a religious group.

Sinema, and a handful of other non-theists, offer representation to the one in five Americans who say they have no religious affiliation, according to the Pew Research Center.

The 36-year-old is also standing out as the first openly bisexual member of Congress in history.

She joins six openly gay and lesbian members in the most demographically diverse Congress in U.S. history. Senator Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., became the Senate’s first openly gay member.

 

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