ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A woman is poised to lead the New York state Senate for the first time in history.

Senate Democrats on Monday plan to formally tap Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins of Yonkers to lead the Senate when the 2019 session begins in January.

Democrats won a majority of Senate seats in this month's elections, eliminating the Republican Party's last bastion of political power in state government.

Stewart-Cousins was first elected to the Senate in 2006 and has led the Democratic minority since 2012.

Democrats already hold all four statewide offices and have a big majority in the state Assembly.

Now that they control the Senate, Democrats are predicting passage for several bills long blocked by Senate Republicans. They include protections for abortion rights, legalization of recreational marijuana and voting reform.

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