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Gen Z has arrived in Congress: Maxwell Frost, 25, wins Florida House seat

Frost beat Republican Calvin Wimbish, 72, to represent a district in and around Orlando, after making gun violence a focal point of his campaign.
Maxwell Frost meets with community leaders and organizers from Central Florida at Wekiva Island in Longwood, Fla. Frost is an Uber driver and Gen Z candidate for Florida's 10th congressional district. He won a crowded democrat primary and is favored to win the general election in a heavily blue district.
Maxwell Frost in Longwood, Fla., on Aug. 30.Thomas Simonetti / The Washington Post via Getty Images file

Community organizer Maxwell Frost won his Florida race for Congress on Tuesday, NBC News projected, making him the first member of Generation Z to reach the House of Representatives.

Frost, 25, beat Republican Calvin Wimbish, a retired 72-year-old Army Green Beret, to take the Orlando-based 10th Congressional District seat now held by Democrat Val Demings.

“Central Florida my name is Maxwell Alejandro Frost and I’m going to be the first Generation Z member of the United States Congress!" Frost told cheering supporters in Orlando Tuesday night.

Frost will stand out among his soon-to-be peers in the halls of Congress where the average age of House members is 58. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is 82, while GOP leader Kevin McCarthy will be 58 three weeks after the 118th Congress gavels into session. (Gen Z generally refers to those born in the late 1990s to the early 2010s.)

Members of the House must be at least 25. The minimum age to serve in the U.S. Senate is 30 and a president must be at least 35.

The young Democrat worked as the national organizing director for March for Our Lives, an anti-gun violence group that emerged from the Parkland massacre, and has made gun violence a focal point of his campaign.

Frost picked up endorsements from prevention groups like Brady: United Against Gun Violence and Giffords, as well as gun control activist Fred Guttenberg, one of the most high-profile parent activists to emerge from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre on Feb. 14, 2018, when his 14-year-old daughter Jaime Guttenberg was gunned down.

Frost said he knew fighting gun violence was going to be his calling at age 15, when 20 children and six adults were gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on Dec. 14, 2012.

"I started to organize at 15 because I didn’t want to get shot at my school," Frost told supporters Tuesday night.

"People are yearning for bold champions who believe in the bold transformational change that we need, that every single person in Central Florida and across the whole state and across this nation deserve, by virtue of being a human.” 

Frost was heavily favored to win the deep blue district. With 72% of votes counted, he led Wimbish 58.8% to 39.7%.

Another Gen Z congressional candidate, 25-year-old Republican Karoline Leavitt, challenged Democratic incumbent Rep. Chris Pappas in New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District, but will lose that race NBC News projects. Leavitt conceded the race in a call to Pappas and in remarks to supporters late Tuesday.

"I have but nothing but respect for her and the campaign that she ran," Pappas told supporters in Manchester. "And we should all be grateful for those who step up to run for office."

Leavitt told her supporters that this "is not the outcome that we wanted" but thanked the "thousands of people showed up to vote for team Karoline today."