Record numbers of women nominated for governor, Congress

Record numbers of women nominated for governor, Congress
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A record number of women have won major party nominations for governorships and seats in the House of Representatives this year — a full month before primary season is officially over.

Democrats on Tuesday chose former Michigan House Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer (D) and Kansas state Sen. Laura Kelly (D) as their nominees for governorships.

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That brings the number of women who have won major party gubernatorial nominations to 11 — one more than the previous record, set five times over the last quarter century.

Democrats have nominated women as their gubernatorial candidates in Idaho, Texas, Georgia, New Mexico and Maine. Republicans nominated Rep. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemSouth Dakota governor signs law to allow concealed handguns without a permit South Dakota legislature votes to allow concealed handguns without a permit GOP seeks to ram through Trump’s B wall demand MORE (R) in South Dakota. Incumbent Govs. Kate Brown (D) of Oregon, Kay Ivey (R) of Alabama and Kim Reynolds (R) of Iowa have all won renomination.

The number of female gubernatorial candidates is almost certain to swell in the month before primaries end. Women are close to the lead or leading races in Hawaii, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Florida and New Hampshire. Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) is all but certain to win renomination.

"We're not just breaking records here this year, we're blowing through them," said Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women and Politics at the Eagleton Institute at Rutgers. "What we're seeing this year is the whole reason why we want more women to run for office."

Data from the Center for American Women and Politics show more women have won nominations for seats in Congress, as well.

When the polls closed in Michigan, Missouri and Washington state on Tuesday, a handful of women formally advanced to the November midterm elections, bringing the total number of female nominees above the previous record. Two years ago, 167 women secured major party nominations for seats in Congress.

Many candidates who won nominations on Tuesday are almost certain to return to Congress, including incumbents in safe districts like Reps. Debbie DingellDeborah (Debbie) Ann DingellOvernight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Push for cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill | Court lets Dems defend ObamaCare | Flu season not as severe as last year, CDC says Bill Clinton jokes no one would skip Dingell's funeral: 'Only time' we could get the last word Democrats seek cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill MORE (D-Mich.), Brenda LawrenceBrenda Lulenar LawrenceDem lawmaker says Trump administration has kicked ethics standards 'to the curb' Dem lawmaker calls for investigation of Fairfax over assault allegations Dem responds to ‘trolls’ who said wearing white made female lawmakers look like nurses MORE (D-Mich.), Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Sanders set to shake up 2020 race House Dems release 2020 GOP 'retirements to watch' for Scalise, Wagner plan to introduce discharge petition for abortion bill MORE (R-Mo.) and Vicky HartzlerVicky Jo HartzlerFarm bill presents opportunity to improve SNAP program Record numbers of women nominated for governor, Congress Five GOP lawmakers mulling bid to lead conservative caucus MORE (R-Mo.).

Four women who hold House seats from Washington state — Reps. Suzan DelBeneSuzan Kay DelBeneLobbying world Bustos elected to lead Democratic campaign arm Maloney drops out of Democratic campaign committee race MORE (D), Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalGoogle to allow employees to sue over discrimination, harassment Overnight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Push for cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill | Court lets Dems defend ObamaCare | Flu season not as severe as last year, CDC says Democrats seek cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill MORE (D), Jaime Herrera BeutlerJaime Lynn Herrera BeutlerThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Sanders set to shake up 2020 race House Dems release 2020 GOP 'retirements to watch' for House Dems unveil initial GOP targets in 2020 MORE (R) and Cathy McMorris RodgersCathy McMorris RodgersHillicon Valley: Republicans demand answers from mobile carriers on data practices | Top carriers to stop selling location data | DOJ probing Huawei | T-Mobile execs stayed at Trump hotel as merger awaited approval House Republicans question mobile carriers on data practices Washington governor announces killer whale recovery plan MORE (R) — advanced to November's midterm elections.

McMorris Rodgers faces a potentially strong challenge from Lisa Brown, a former state Senate Democratic leader. With thousands of ballots left to count, McMorris Rodgers had taken only about 500 votes more than Brown in the top-two primary, hinting at a close race ahead.

Herrera Beutler will also face a Democratic woman in November. The Republican narrowly led college professor Carolyn Long (D), 41 to 37 percent, with five other candidates splitting the remaining vote.

Democratic women won primaries on Tuesday and will face Reps. Tim WalbergTimothy (Tim) Lee WalbergCongress must take the next steps on federal criminal justice reforms Midterm results shake up national map Dems seek to rebuild blue wall in Rust Belt contests MORE (R-Mich.), Mike Bishop (R-Mich.), Justin AmashJustin AmashBusiness, conservative groups slam Trump’s national emergency declaration House approves motion condemning anti-Semitism Schiff: Intel chiefs testimony may ‘undermine’ Trump’s ability to declare emergency for wall MORE (R-Mich.), Paul MitchellPaul MitchellIt’s time to shut down all future government shutdowns GOP lawmakers offer several locations for Trump address Dem leaders avert censure vote against Steve King MORE (R-Mich.), Blaine LuetkemeyerWilliam (Blaine) Blaine LuetkemeyerNew push to open banks to marijuana industry The legal scandal that no one is talking about Shutdown should focus attention on common-sense flood insurance reform MORE (R-Mo.), Jason SmithJason Thomas SmithDon’t extend the electric vehicle tax credit; repeal it The Hill's Morning Report — Nasty shutdown fight gets nastier Democrat responds to being told 'go back to Puerto Rico' on House floor MORE (R-Mo.) and Dan NewhouseDaniel (Dan) Milton NewhouseImmigration groups press for pairing Dreamer benefits with border security Trump leaves GOP in turmoil with shutdown looming Washington governor announces killer whale recovery plan MORE (R-Wash.) in the fall. Democrats also nominated a woman, Haley Stevens, to run for a seat being vacated by Rep. Dave TrottDavid Alan TrottMeet the lawmakers putting politics aside to save our climate Michigan New Members 2019 Democrats flip Michigan seat in race between two political newcomers MORE (R-Mich.).

And Democrats nominated women to replace former Rep. John ConyersJohn James ConyersDemocrats seek cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill Virginia scandals pit Democrats against themselves and their message Women's March plans 'Medicare for All' day of lobbying in DC MORE Jr. (D-Mich.), who resigned in disgrace over sexual harassment accusations. Detroit voters picked City Council President Brenda Jones as the Democratic nominee to fill the remainder of Conyers's term and former state Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D) to take over when the next Congress convenes.

Republicans picked insurance consultant Candius Stearns (R) as their nominee to replace retiring Rep. Sandy Levin (D-Mich.). Stearns will face Andy Levin, Sandy's son, in the heavily Democratic district in November.

Women are running for office, and winning, more frequently now than ever before, Walsh said. The first year in which women captured more than 100 party nominations for U.S. House seats was 1992; every year since, women have won more than 100 nominations.

"If women aren't in these races, we're not going to see more women getting elected. It's a process," Walsh said.

The number of women nominated by major parties for House seats will expand in the month until primary season is over. Hawaii, Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, Wisconsin, Alaska, Wyoming, Arizona, Florida, Massachusetts, Delaware, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Louisiana all have primary elections ahead.