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 NoemNew South Dakota law requiring 'In God We Trust' sign to hang in public schools goes into effect Trump: If I say I should be on Mt. Rushmore, 'I will end up with such bad publicity' Transportation Department seeks to crack down on pipeline protests: report 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 DingellGun reform groups to pressure GOP senators with rallies in all 50 states Automakers rebuff Trump, strike fuel efficiency deal with California Here are the 95 Democrats who voted to support impeachment MORE (D-Mich.), Brenda LawrenceBrenda Lulenar LawrenceMichigan House Democrats plan vigil for Iraqi man who died after deportation Democrats warn of Trump trap Democratic lawmaker: 'I love America even though at times she didn't love me back' MORE (D-Mich.), Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerLiberal think tank: GOP paid parental leave proposals are too narrow A true believer in diversity, inclusion GOP amps up efforts to recruit women candidates MORE (R-Mo.) and Vicky HartzlerVicky Jo HartzlerHouse approves amendment to reverse transgender military ban The House-passed bills that have ended up in the Senate 'graveyard' Dem proposal to ban Pentagon funds for border wall survives House panel votes MORE (R-Mo.).

Four women who hold House seats from Washington state — Reps. Suzan DelBeneSuzan Kay DelBeneDemocrats worry diversity furor could spill into 2020 election House Democrats inch toward majority support for impeachment Wave of Washington state lawmakers call for impeachment proceedings against Trump MORE (D), Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalLawmakers urge DNC to name Asian American debate moderator Medicare for all: fears and facts House Democrats urge Trump to end deportations of Iraqis after diabetic man's death MORE (D), Jaime Herrera BeutlerJaime Lynn Herrera BeutlerDems push to revive Congress' tech office Bill allowing Congress to hire Dreamers advances House fails to override Trump veto on border wall MORE (R) and Cathy McMorris RodgersCathy McMorris RodgersLawmakers deride FTC settlement as weak on Facebook Overnight Energy: Fight over fuel standards intensifies | Democrats grill Trump officials over rule rollback | California official blasts EPA chief over broken talks | Former EPA official says Wheeler lied to Congress EPA head clashes with California over how car emissions negotiations broke down 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 WalbergPro-trade group targets Democratic leadership in push for new NAFTA The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Restrictive state abortion laws ignite fiery 2020 debate On The Money: Mnuchin signals officials won't release Trump tax returns | Trump to hold off on auto tariffs | WH nears deal with Mexico, Canada on metal tariffs | GOP fears trade war fallout for farmers | Warren, regulator spar over Wells Fargo MORE (R-Mich.), Mike Bishop (R-Mich.), Justin AmashJustin AmashLawmakers blast Trump as Israel bars door to Tlaib and Omar House Democrats targeting six more Trump districts for 2020 Sanford headed to New Hampshire amid talk of challenge to Trump MORE (R-Mich.), Paul MitchellPaul MitchellIowa GOP chair calls Steve King's rape, incest comments 'outrageous' The Hill's Morning Report — Trump and the new Israel-'squad' controversy Republicans offer support for Steve King challenger MORE (R-Mich.), Blaine LuetkemeyerWilliam (Blaine) Blaine LuetkemeyerSenate bill seeks to bring freedom back to banking On The Money: Dems inch closer to demanding Trump's tax returns | Consumer chief pressed to undo Mulvaney's work | IRS says average tax refund up New push to open banks to marijuana industry MORE (R-Mo.), Jason SmithJason Thomas SmithSeniors deserve access to Health Savings Accounts House passes sweeping budget, debt limit deal Top Missouri newspaper condemns GOP's 'shameful silence' on Trump's 'racism' MORE (R-Mo.) and Dan NewhouseDaniel (Dan) Milton NewhouseHouse passes bill to protect 'Dreamers' Immigrant Heritage Month should spur congressional action to fix immigration laws Thirty-four GOP members buck Trump on disaster bill 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 TrottPro-Trump Republican immigrant to challenge Dem lawmaker who flipped Michigan seat Meet the lawmakers putting politics aside to save our climate Michigan New Members 2019 MORE (R-Mich.).

And Democrats nominated women to replace former Rep. John ConyersJohn James ConyersEXCLUSIVE: Trump on reparations: 'I don't see it happening' McConnell: Reparations aren't 'a good idea' This week: Democrats move funding bills as caps deal remains elusive 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.