Friday, April 06, 2018

How about a Native woman for the House?

You probably have heard that a record number of women have thrown down to run for Congress this year, 309 so far have filed for candidacy. Two thirds are Democrats. Forty women are running so far in governors' races.

But you may not have heard that several of those women identify as Indigenous, or Native American, or Indians. No native woman has ever been elected to Congress. Three Democratic aspirants seek to change that.
  • Sharice Davids is running in the 3rd District in Kansas, part of Kansas City. She is enrolled in the Ho-Chunk Nation (Wisconsin) and grew up in Kansas, is a graduate of Cornell Law School, was a White House fellow in the Obama Administration, and has worked for community development in South Dakota. Much more about this woman's accomplishments and plans at her campaign website.She is running in a crowded Democratic primary (August 7) to take on sitting Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder; the district narrowly supported Hillary Clinton in 2016.
  • Amanda Douglas is running in Oklahoma's 1st District, a heavily Republican seat that is open in 2018 because the incumbent has been nominated to head NASA for the Trump administration. Douglas is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation and graduated from Oklahoma State University. Here's her campaign website.
  • Debra Haaland is running in New Mexico's 1st District which takes in three quarters of Albuquerque. She is an enrolled member of the Laguna Pueblo and a veteran of state Democratic politics. Since 2008, this seat has been strongly Democratic, so the victor in the June 5 primary should have a strong likelihood of election in November. Haaland faces several serious opponents in the primary, but she has broad endorsements including the Congressional Black Caucus and the National Organization for Women PAC. Campaign website here.
Mark Trahant of the University of North Dakota chronicles Native political participation at Trahant Reports for anyone interested in keeping up with these efforts.

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