Thoughts of a Colorado mom writing to maintain sanity and intellectual activity in a house with three young children. All questions welcome, no topic safe.
Wednesday, November 7, 2018
A Representative Democracy
As promised, this blog entry contains good news. Last night, as election results poured in, election watchers detailed a number of epic firsts for our democracy (from NPR):
With women making up only 20 percent of Congress, there are many types of women — especially women of color — who have never been represented on Capitol Hill. The record-breaking wave of female candidates in 2018 comes with a list of firsts among those women. Here's a list of some of those firsts, which we will keep updating as results come in.
Youngest woman: Twenty-nine-year-old Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the youngest woman elected to Congress, in New York's 14th District.First Muslim women: Democrat Rashida Tlaib, in Michigan's 13th District, and Minnesota Democrat Ilhan Omar, from that state's 5th District, both became the first Muslim women elected to Congress tonight. Tlaib will also be the first Palestinian-American to serve in Congress.First Native American women: DemocratSharice Davids won the House seat from Kansas' 3rd District, unseating incumbent Republican Kevin Yoder, and Democrat Deb Haaland won the seat in an open race in New Mexico's 1st District. That makes both of them the first Native American women elected to Congress. Republican Yvette Herrell in New Mexico's 2nd District could become the third member of this group, but the Associated Press has not yet called her race.First black woman from Massachusetts: Democrat Ayanna Pressley became the first black woman elected to Congress from Massachusetts, in that state's 7th District. She unseated incumbent Democrat Mike Capuano in a surprise upset in September. First women House members from Iowa:Democrat Abby Finkenauer in Iowa's 1st District defeated Republican incumbent Rod Blum, and Democrat Cindy Axne in the state's 3rd District defeated Republican incumbent David Young to become the Hawkeye state's first two women elected to the House. Iowa elected its first woman to the Senate in 2014 — Republican Joni Ernst. First Latina Congress members from Texas: Democrat Veronica Escobar, in the state's 16th District, and Democrat Sylvia Garcia, in the state's 29th District, will be the first Latinas to represent the state in Congress, according to the Texas Tribune. First woman elected governor of Iowa: Republican incumbent Kim Reynolds became the first woman elected governor of Iowa. She served as lieutenant governor of the state from 2011 through 2017, then became governor when then-Gov. Terry Branstad was appointed ambassador to China for the Trump administration in 2017. (https://www.npr.org/2018/11/06/664951794/a-list-of-firsts-for-women-in-this-years-midterm-elections)
Here in Colorado we elected the first openly gay governor in the United States with Jared Polis. Guam elected their first female governor. It's important to note the first lines from the NPR story - that there are many women (and men) who have never been represented by one of their own in Congress. This year's midterm election marked a number of historical firsts in the United States' ongoing experiment in representative democracy. I have great hope that we will see more action for the people, by the people who have been elected to represent us.