Sen. Tammy Duckworth has become the first sitting member of the “world’s greatest deliberative body” to give birth while in office.
The Illinois Democrat — who turned 50 on March 12 — announced the birth of her daughter Maile Pearl Bowlsbey in a statement Monday. Maile is her second child. Her office said the senator and her family were recovering well.
Duckworth is one of only 10 women in the nation’s history to have a baby while serving in Congress. The other babies were born to mothers serving in the House of Representatives.
Duckworth has a daughter named Abigail who is 3. The senator is married to Bryan Bowlsbey.
“Bryan, Abigail and I couldn’t be happier to welcome little Maile Pearl as the newest addition to our family and we’re deeply honored that our good friend Senator Akaka was able to bless her name for us—his help in naming both of our daughters means he will always be with us,” Duckworth said.
She was referring to Daniel Akaka who served in the U.S. Senate from Hawaii from 1990 to 2013. He died Friday. He was 93.
Duckworth also said Maile’s middle name comes from her husband’s great aunt, Pearl Bowlsbey Johnson, an Army officer and a nurse who served during the Second World War. “He spent many summer months with her while growing up, we feel her presence still and are grateful for her service to our nation during the most challenging of times,” she said.
The senator added: “We’re also so grateful for the love and support of our friends and family, as well as our wonderful medical teams for everything they’ve done to help us in our decades-long journey to complete our family.”
Members of the Senate threw a baby shower for Duckworth on March 20 in the Capitol — men and women, Democrats and Republicans attended, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
Maile was born in a hospital in suburban Washington, according to the paper.
Duckworth told the paper in January that getting pregnant a second time was a “struggle.” Her fertility specialist for both pregnancies was a Chicago doctor.
Duckworth is a decorated Iraq War veteran who lost both her legs in combat, according to her website.
She was elected to the Senate in 2016 after serving two terms as a congresswoman.