Dramatic Increase In Women of Color as 2018 Candidates

By Sarah Ruiz-Grossman

10/11/2018 12:01 pm ET

The 2018 midterm elections have already broken barriers for representation among candidates for political office: A record number of women ran and won in the primaries, and an unprecedented number of LGBTQ candidates also ran and have won so far.

And now a new report has found a record number of women of color have won primaries in 2018.

There was a 75 percent increase in women of color among nominees for Congress in 2018 compared with 2012, according to a report released Thursday from the Reflective Democracy Campaign, a group that studies the demographics of elected officials in the U.S.

The report looked at the race and gender of candidates who won primaries in House and Senate races, using data from more than 40,000 general election candidates from 2012 to 2018. It included data from 43 states (no 2016 data were available for Alabama and Maryland, and no 2018 data were available as of late September for five states, including New York and Virginia).

Since 2012, the number of white male congressional candidates decreased by 13 percent, while the total of white women increased by 36 percent. Female candidates overall for Congress increased by 44 percent.

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