Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Another Year of the Woman has snuck up on us

David Hopkins, a political scientist at Boston College, points out something the fevered presidential campaign and the battle over the Supreme Court is obscuring: the next Congress is already primed to include more women than the last. 

A record number of women sought public office in 2018, and a record number were elected to Congress.

Though it hasn't received the same degree of notice this time around, the records broken in 2018 will be broken again this year. With yesterday's Delaware primary election marking the end of the congressional nomination season, the numbers are now available to make full historical comparisons. Among Democrats, 48 percent of all House nominees in 2020 are women, exceeding the all-time high of 42 percent set in 2018. And for the first time in history, a majority (58 percent) of non-incumbent Democratic nominees are women.

An even bigger change has happened on the Republican side this year. The mobilization of women was a single-party phenomenon last election, but now it's become bipartisan. The share of female Republican House nominees grew from 13 percent to 23 percent between 2018 and 2020, and the share of women among non-incumbent nominees surged from 18 percent to 33 percent—not only easily outpacing any previous election for Republicans, but even exceeding the Democratic rate in every year before 2018.

Most of these women probably will not win their elections; most non-incumbents lose, even in times of great turmoil. But almost certainly there will be more women in the House in 2021.


So it's interesting to look at ads from a couple of these women:

Dr Hiral Tipirneni is running for an Arizona seat currently occupied by a Republican who was recently found guilty of ethics violations including using Congressional staff to pay for his personal expenses like first class flight upgrades, dry cleaning and expensive dinners and also to babysit his children. He then lied on finance reports. 

Sima Ladjevardian, an attorney, breast cancer survivor, and activist, is seeking a Houston, TX seat. 

I think Ruth Bader Ginsburg would smile to see them in the arena.

1 comment:

Bonnie said...

They had great ads. I hate the very negative ones I'm seeing.