Ocasio-Cortez to be youngest woman ever elected to Congress

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wins election to New York’s 14th congressional district

In a year that has been defined by the political awakening and activism of women, the mid-term is testing whether those women will reach record-breaking numbers in Congress and in governor's mansions across the country.

The first Muslim women have been elected to Congress, with Democrat Rashida Tlaib winning in MI and Ilhan Omar winning in Minnesota.

A number of women have also achieved significant firsts in their states, including Democrats Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia who become the first Latina Congresswomen in Texas, and Alyanna Pressley from MA, becoming her state's first black representative in Congress. In addition, at least 13 women won Senate seats. Democrat Janet Mills won the ME gubernatorial race and Republican Kristi Noem secured victory to be next governor in South Dakota. New Mexico Democrat Deb Haaland and Kansas Democrat Sharice Davids were elected the first two Native American women to serve in Congress. Davids, a lawyer who will also be Kansas' first openly gay member of Congress, defeated incumbent Republican Kevin Yoder by nine points in a state that was handily won by Trump in 2016.

Letitia James is the first black woman elected to a statewide office in NY.

With black candidates in several high-profile races - including gubernatorial candidates Andrew Gillum of Florida and Stacey Abrams in Georgia - voters nationally said by 71-24 percent it's important to elect more racial and ethnic minorities to public office and 44 percent say it's very important.

Also in the House, Democrats Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of MI will be the first Muslim women to serve in Congress.

VoteCast reported that more women voted for Democratic candidates than men. Tlaib also becomes the first Palestinian-American in Congress and Omar the first Somali-American.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's surprise victory in the June congressional primary in NY shook up Washington and the Democratic Party. In 2014, the most recent off-presidential midterm election year, Democrats won the U.S. House vote among women, even though Republicans overwhelmingly secured overall control of the chamber.

The last time women voted for Democrats anywhere near that margin was more than 30 years ago. She ran a grass roots campaign that took on the "Queens Democratic Party machine" and championed progressive proposals, such as the abolition of the Immigration Customs Enforcement (Ice), a single-payer health care plan and tuition-free college. Many female Democratic House candidates who prevailed on Election Day ran in opposition to Trump or his policies.

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