The Hill's 25 Women to Watch: Page 8 of 26

The Hill's 25 Women to Watch

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MIA LOVE

UTAH CANDIDATE FOR THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Few small-town mayors get the chance to speak at their party’s national convention — but Saratoga Springs, Utah, Mayor Mia Love (R) is no ordinary small-town mayor.

She is one of the National Republican Congressional Committee’s top recruits this election cycle and is giving battle-hardened Rep. Jim MathesonJames (Jim) David MathesonUtah redistricting reform measure likely to qualify for ballot Trump's budget targets affordable, reliable power Work begins on T infrastructure plan MORE (D-Utah) one of the toughest races of his career. She also has a unique profile, as a daughter of Haitian immigrants who converted to Mormonism and moved west from Connecticut shortly after she graduated college.

Love is a trained actress — she turned down a role in a Broadway musical because it conflicted with her wedding — and her comfort onstage was on display at this year’s Republican National Convention, where she delivered a well-received speech focused on her immigrant roots, self-reliance and entrepreneurship.

Love got started in politics at a very local level, leading the charge to force her neighborhood’s developers to spray for bugs. She soon started showing up at city council meetings, and when she felt her opinions were being ignored, she decided to run for a council seat. She won both that campaign and, six years later, a mayoral race in the 1,000-person town outside of Salt Lake City. 

Now she’s aiming for a much higher seat. Originally a dark-horse candidate, Love won the nomination with surprising ease, enjoying more than two-thirds support at the state GOP convention.

She’s drawn high-profile surrogates, too: Ann Romney, Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTo woo black voters in Georgia, Dems need to change their course of action Senate panel again looks to force Trump’s hand on cyber warfare strategy Senate panel advances 6B defense policy bill MORE (R-Ariz.) and House Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerJim Jordan as Speaker is change America needs to move forward Paul Ryan’s political purgatory Republicans fear retribution for joining immigration revolt MORE (R-Ohio) have fundraised or stumped for her, and Reps. Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanDon't let them fool you — Republicans love regulation, too Senate harassment bill runs into opposition from House The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by PhRMA — The art of walking away from the deal MORE (R-Wis.), Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorThe Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by CVS Health — Trump’s love-hate relationship with the Senate Race for Republican Speaker rare chance to unify party for election Scalise allies upset over Ryan blindside on McCarthy endorsement MORE (R-Va.) and Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) have donated to her campaign.

Polls show a tight race between Love and Matheson. If she wins, she’ll be thrust into her party’s spotlight — but even if Matheson holds on, she’s unlikely to disappear from the political scene.

— Cameron Joseph

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