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Culture > News

We Elected The First Gen Z Member Of Congress

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

Nov. 8 brought about a “civic awakening” throughout this country in the form of the 2022 U.S. midterm elections. These election periods are incredibly important as they allow voters to select their representatives for many key offices nationwide. Seat vacancies were voted on and filled for district representatives, state senators and governors, depending on your state of residency. However, the midterms are notorious for having a relatively low voter turnout compared to the traditionally more publicized and divisive presidential election.

As the decades pass since the establishment and modernization of our legislative system here in the United States, congressional elections along with their inevitable voting trajectories and multimedia campaign strategies by interchangeable DC residents and their supporters, currently lean far more polarizing than moderate. Especially with the emergence of first-world technology’s significance in American politics in conjunction with globalization through this Information Revolution we are currently living in and feeling the effects of. 

With this year’s election cycle, Democrats, Republicans, independents and third-party legislators, leaders, constituents and candidates were under the false pretenses that there would be a general “red wave” this year, meaning a surge of voters supporting Republican candidates resulting in an unusually high number being elected to office. However, those projected outcomes did not come to fruition arguably due to factors such as the media coverage of abortion rights in politics this year and the list of Trump endorsements around the country to name a few. 

Yet, with recent positive projections and outcomes at the polls, we have what I would like to highlight and refer to as the silent but mighty “Gen-Z tsunami” that took this election by its reins both at the polls and on the ballots. These are individuals, such as myself, born between the estimated years of 1997 and 2012 putting the oldest members of Gen Z generally starting to construct and follow through with their post-education plans, with beginnings of new careers and possible hopes of future families, while the youngest are around the age of ten. 

What if I told you we are entering a new period in American history and representative politics? 

At 25 years old, Maxwell Alejandro Frost will officially become the first Gen Z member of Congress after successfully winning his race for Florida’s 10th congressional district on Tuesday. After Democratic representative Val Demings vacated the seat for an unsuccessful run to unseat Republican senator incumbent Marco Rubio, the spot was up for grabs between Frost and his Republican opponent Calvin Wimbish, a 72-year-old retired Army Green Beret and conservative activist. Florida’s District 10, consisting of and around West Orlando, is home to a relatively diverse population of Americans with a 30.1% Hispanic, 25.6% Black and 5.3% Asian ethnic/racial density and a median house income of $58,849. As the dust settles, Frost receives roughly 59% of these votes while Wimbish comes away with 39.5%, leaving less than 2% of votes to third-party and independent candidates. 

Coming from humble beginnings and Cuban heritage, Frost stands for and represents (pun intended) a multitude of communities and has participated in his fair share of activism towards issues that weigh heavy on young voters and their direct and indirect experiences in this country. 

He worked as a top organizer for March for Our Lives, the anti-gun-violence group formed in response to the Parkland school shooting in 2018, and the American Civil Liberties Union. He helped secure an unprecedented five billion dollars in funding for community-based violence prevention programs in President Biden’s budget proposal. With these actions and so many more already under his belt in his mid-twenties, Frost is more than prepared to represent his constituents and our generation on Capitol Hill. 

If you are eligible and did not vote this year, I beg you to reconsider in the future! 

Be a part of the change you want to see in the world.

Taylor Carey is a passionate writer and global citizen majoring in History and minoring in Political Science here at Virginia Commonwealth University. Taylor enjoys traveling, is a huge foodie and focuses her writing on social issues and current events. When she is not writing you can catch her fulfilling her Vice Presidential role as a Sigma Sigma Sigma sister and officer, cooking her favorite foods or in the Cabell Library working ahead on her homework!