Fairfield state Rep. Kim Fawcett has made official what many had surmised for weeks.

The 133rd District Democrat on April 25 formally announced she will seek the state Senate seat being vacated by Republican John McKinney, of Fairfield.

McKinney, who has represented the 28th Senate District for 15 years, is seeking the GOP nomination for governor. The sprawling district includes Fairfield, Easton, Newtown, Weston and part of Westport.

Introduced by U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., Fawcett announced her candidacy on the steps of Fairfield Town Hall before about 50 friends and supporters. Among them were Fairfield First Selectman Mike Tetreau, Weston First Selectman Gayle Weinstein and Democratic Town Committee leaders from Easton, Weston and Westport.

In a news release, Fawcett said the 28th District race will be significant with the departure of McKinney, who is the Senate minority leader. No Democrat has held the seat since 1974, and no woman has ever been elected to serve that district.

"Despite the odds, a Democrat can win this seat, and this year I intend to prove -- and I hope you'll join me in proving ---that it's possible," Fawcett said.

Fawcett initially had planned to appear in Newtown later that day, but canceled that event to return to the Capitol to vote on a series of judicial appointments, her campaign said.

Fawcett is in her fourth term in the House.

Two candidates are vying for the Democratic nomination to replace her this year -- Fairfield Selectman Cristin McCarthy Vahey and Fairfield Registrar of Voters Matthew Waggner.

Republicans who have announced candidacies for the Senate seat include Fairfield state Rep. Tony Hwang, D- 134, and Nelson Gonzalez, of Fairfield, a former General Electric Co. executive.