Rep.

(D-N.M.) was formally sworn in as a member of the House on Monday after winning a special election to fill the seat vacated by Interior Secretary

.

House Democrats now have slightly more wiggle room for defections among their historically thin majority with Stansbury a sitting lawmaker. Democrats now hold 220 seats over Republicans' 211, meaning that they can afford up to four defections and still pass legislation without any GOP support.

Before Stansbury was sworn in on Monday, Democrats could only lose three of their own members on a party-line vote.

Stansbury

earlier this month in a race that was considered an early test of both parties' strengths ahead of the 2022 midterm elections, although the Albuquerque-area district is largely urban and Democratic.

She previously served as a member of the New Mexico state House of Representatives and worked as a science educator in the state through the Museum of Natural History. She also worked for the Office of Management and Budget as well as the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

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