RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Republican state Sen. Chuck Edwards defeated Democrat Jasmine Beach-Ferrara to win an open U.S. House seat in the western North Carolina district currently represented by GOP Rep. Madison Cawthorn, whom Edwards beat in the primary.

The 11th District includes the liberal mountain city of Asheville — the lone blue pocket in a sea of red — and many of the state’s mountain counties bordering Tennessee and Georgia. The race has been without an incumbent since May when Cawthorn lost the Republican primary after just one term on Capitol Hill.

Edwards, 62, of Flat Rock, North Carolina, has served in the state Senate since 2016.

His opponent, Asheville Democrat Beach-Ferrara, is a two-term Buncombe County Commissioner, ordained minister and LGBTQ activist. She would have been the first out LGBTQ person elected to a federal office from North Carolina.