Girls Trip To Congress

The United States is made up of over 325 million people. A little over half of those people are women. Yet, until last night, there had never been more than 84 out of 435 female members in the House of Representatives. Luckily, that changed with the midterm elections on November 6th.

More than 100 women were expected to win their races, and now 99 women are confirmed victors. With this record-breaking number of women in office comes great strides in the ability of our nation to represent minorities in this country. Here are some of the women breaking the glass ceiling and many other barriers that stand between women and other underrepresented groups being represented in our government.

Sharice Davids

Sharice Davids beat incumbent representative Kevin Yoder to take her seat in Congress for the state of Kansas. By a seven-point margin, Davids became one of the first Native American women and the first openly lesbian woman to be elected to the House of Representatives. Honestly, how cool is it that she served in the United States Army, and is now representing her tribe and community in the House of Representatives? She represented her country, and for too long she was represented by people that in no way understood her background, her belief system or her way of life. I fully expect her to engage in the conversation to help those who have been neglected by their government. There are so many laws that pass that affect people that don't have a voice; she gives them that voice.

(Facebook, "Sharice For Congress")

Deb Haaland

Deb Haaland is the other Native American woman voted into office on November 6th, beating out Republican nominee Janice Arnold-Jones. She is a member of the Laguna Pueblo people in New Mexico and the daughter of two United States veterans. I can't think of anything more amazing than the fact the Haaland put herself through law school while raising her children as a single mom. If anyone ever doubted the power of a driven woman, don't do it again. Haaland challenged herself to be better so she could create great opportunities for others and give a voice to the voiceless. Our country is based on accurate and complete representation, yet it is one of the things we struggle with the most.

(Pilar Law)

Rashida Tlaib

Rashida Tlaib provided another win for the Democratic Party on November 6th by receiving over 80 percent of the vote. After being the first Muslim woman to serve in the Michigan State Legislature, Tlaib went further to be one of the first Muslim women to be elected to the House of Representatives. I am excited for the voice Tlaib will bring to the House as our country addresses race, religion, and discrimination. There are so many rules and predispositions that spread across this country that come from the decisions made by people in power. It is unjust impose restrictions on people who do not have a voice in the decisions that create them. The importance of diversifying the opinions among those in charge is just as important now than ever before.

(USA Today)

Ilhan Omar

Ilhan Omar beat out Republican nominee Jennifer Zielinski by a wide margin to take Minnesota's 5th district seat in the House of Representatives. Let me just say, this woman is knocking down walls left and right. Not only is she one of the first Muslim Americans to be elected to Congress, but she is the first refugee, the first Somali-American, and the first person to have been born on an African continent to be elected to Congress. I know I personally cannot wait to see her destroy the hateful rhetoric about immigration that divides our country. Too much of that conversation has been had by people who cannot comprehend how it feels to be an immigrant and a refugee. The perspective of those who have uprooted their lives and lived with the hope of a life in the United States should be included in the conversation that decides whether these hopes are realized for others. 

(ABC News)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is only twenty-nine years old. She was also just elected to New York's 12th district in the House of Representatives. Ocasio-Cortez is now the youngest person to be elected to Congress, and I am thoroughly impressed. The fact that she has her life together enough to run for a federal office position at 28 - she just turned 29 last month - is something that my lazy 20-year-old mind cannot comprehend. All I can say is, "You go girl". I can also say thank you; I don't know about all of you, but I do not feel that the 72-year-old white man that has held a seat in the House for as long as there's been a House truly understands what I go through and what I want from my country. We can finally feel represented by those who have the capacity to understand.

(CNN)

These women are powerful. Any woman that dedicates herself to her passion is powerful. I personally want to thank each of these women and all of the other women working to break down the barriers keeping women and minorities from holding positions of power. They know, as we all do, that if given an equal opportunity, we can all change the world. 

Want to keep up with Her Campus OSU? Make sure to like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, check out our Pinterest board and read our latest Tweets