Women Running for Congress in 2018

Female power! In 2018 we are finally seeing a huge surge in women running for power positions in society. In particular, there are many women taking the stand to run for Congress in the upcoming 2018 election. As told by Fortune, this is seen as response to a number of factors that are currently running in America’s mind. Because of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, many women have found the courage and inspiration to take the stand as well. Although Clinton lost, many women were still influenced by her campaign because she was the first female presidential nominee of a major party.

President Donald Trump’s campaign also has inspired many women to step up to the plate. Trump's election and inauguration kicked off a nationwide movement among Democratic women. Women took to the streets by the millions in January 2017, bearing protest signs and wearing "pussy hats," in reference to the infamous 2005 Access Hollywood tape, in which Trump bragged about sexual assault. Republican women are also seen to make up some of this record-breaking number of new female politicians.

As of last Thursday, 309 women have filed papers to run for seats in the House, which, along with the rest of Congress, is predominantly filled with men. Since males still makeup a majority of the seats in the House, women are going to have to fight to make an impact. At latest count, 431 women were running for or were likely to run for the House nationwide — 339 Democrats and 92 Republicans. At this point in 2016, there were fewer than half that: 212. Likewise, 50 women are running for or likely to run for Senate, compared with 25 at this point in 2016. Many have not officially filed for office yet — filing deadlines have not occurred in many states. But thus far, this year is on track to break records.

An influx of female candidates doesn't necessarily mean more women will be inspired to vote for those candidates. In general, political scientists say, people vote based on party far more than they vote based on gender. But no matter what, representation of women in the political sphere will increase their visibility to the world and allow for women’s issues and ideas to become to forefront of our nation. Hopefully, this will inspire the next generation of women to strive for their dreams!

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