Over 570 women registered to run for office, topping 2018 record

Over 570 women registered to run for office, topping 2018 record
© Greg Nash

The 2020 election cycle has broken 2018’s record for female candidates and includes a surge of Republican women seeking to close a partisan gender gap.

A total of 574 women have filed to run in primaries for House seats and another 58 have filed for Senate primaries, according to data from the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.

The numbers mark an increase of 20 percent from the 476 House candidates and 53 Senate candidates in 2018.


Female Republican candidates have nearly doubled their number from 2018, with 246 women filing to run as GOP candidates this year compared to 142 in 2018.

Of the candidates, 104 are incumbents running for reelection, including candidates who attracted national attention in 2018 such as Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezBernie Sanders has been most-followed member of Congress on social media for six years Meghan McCain responds to Katie Couric: 'I don't need to be deprogrammed' Skepticism reigns as Biden, McConnell begin new era MORE (D-N.Y.), Abigail SpanbergerAbigail Davis SpanbergerHillicon Valley: Intelligence agency gathers US smartphone location data without warrants, memo says | Democrats seek answers on impact of Russian hack on DOJ, courts | Airbnb offers Biden administration help with vaccine distribution House lawmakers reintroduce bipartisan bill to weed out foreign disinformation on social media 'I saw my life flash before my eyes': An oral history of the Capitol attack MORE (D-Va.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarDemocrats poised to impeach Trump again Pence opposes removing Trump under 25th Amendment: reports Pelosi vows to impeach Trump again — if Pence doesn't remove him first MORE (D-Minn.), Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyBelfast's Troubles echo in today's Washington Federal government carries out 13th and final execution under Trump The Hill's Morning Report - Biden asks Congress to expand largest relief response in U.S. history MORE (D-Mass.) and Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibBiden and the new Congress must protect Americans from utility shutoffs Overnight Energy: EPA rule exempts many polluting industries from future air regulations | Ex-Michigan governor to be charged over Flint water crisis: report | Officials ousted from White House after papers casting doubt on climate science Ex-Michigan governor to be charged over Flint water crisis: report MORE (D-Mich.).

As the number of women running for office has grown, so too has the gender gap between the parties. Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonEverytown urges Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene to resign over newly uncovered remarks Marjorie Taylor Greene expressed support on Facebook for violence against Democrats McConnell last spoke to Trump on Dec. 15 MORE beat President TrumpDonald TrumpBlinken holds first calls as Biden's secretary of State Senators discussing Trump censure resolution Dobbs: Republicans lost in 2020 because they 'forgot who was the true leader' MORE by about 13 points in 2016 among women, while the gap expanded in 2018, with women voting for Democratic candidates over Republican candidates 59 percent to 40 percent.

The 2020 presidential election is poised to expand the margin even further, with former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenDobbs: Republicans lost in 2020 because they 'forgot who was the true leader' Should deficits matter any more? Biden's Cabinet gradually confirmed by Senate MORE leading Trump among women in a number of polls, Bloomberg reported.

With racism and police brutality dominating the headlines, women of color in particular are looking to make inroads in November, building on gains in 2018.


“We have been let down by so many of our elected officials,” Democratic candidate Adia Winfrey, who is running in Alabama’s 3rd District, told Bloomberg. “Because we are having these conversations I think people are becoming more aware of their biases.”

Winfrey, who is Black, is also one of 86 women running this year after losing in 2018. She lost a primary in 2018 to Jesse Smith, who went on to lose to Rep. Mike RogersMichael (Mike) Dennis RogersOvernight Defense: Trump impeached for second time | National Guard at Capitol now armed, swelling to 20K troops for inauguration | Alabama chosen for Space Command home Top Republican congressional aide resigns, rips GOP lawmakers who objected to Biden win READ: The Republicans who voted to challenge election results MORE (R-Ala.), but is running unopposed in the primary this year, according to Bloomberg.

Similarly, Gina Ortiz Jones is running for Texas’s 23rd District after losing in 2018 to Rep. Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdHouse poised to override Trump veto for first time Lawmakers call for including creation of Latino, women's history museums in year-end spending deal House Republicans who didn't sign onto the Texas lawsuit MORE (R-Texas), who is retiring at the end of his term.

“There is not enough folks in these leadership positions that have the experiences of the people being represented,” she told Bloomberg.