With a record number of women running for office in the 2018 midterm elections – and with many poised to make history – the trend this year seems to be a blue and pink wave in politics.
This year, more congressional races feature two women as the leading candidates than ever before, according to the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) at Rutgers University. Similarly, the U.S. is seeing the highest number of women of color being nominated for U.S. House seats, the CAWP said.
Women this year, particularly Democrats, are “not just breaking records, they’re shattering records,” Dr. Kelly Dittmar, a political science professor at Rutgers and CAWP scholar, told Fox News.
But even with a historic number of female candidates filing to run for office, Dittmar pointed out women are still “highly underrepresented” in government. The increase in female candidates is mostly among Democrats.
“The increase among Republican women is there … but it’s quite small,” Dittmar, co-author of the book, “A Seat at the Table,” which takes a look at how congresswomen see their impact on Capitol Hill, said. She attributed the inconsistencies across parties, in part, to a greater enthusiasm among Democrats as the political party not in power, more recruitment among the party and greater financial assistance from liberal groups focused on women, such as EMILY’s List.
After midterm elections are over, Michigan and Minnesota could be represented by the first female Muslim congresswomen. A congressional candidate in Kansas has the opportunity to become the first lesbian Native American member of the House. Both Arizona and Tennessee have the possibility of electing the states’ first female senator.