9 Inspiring Women Elected To The 116th Congress

9 Inspiring Women Elected To The 116th Congress

Beginning their congressional terms this January, a group of refined and educated women is inspiring the nation.


The 2018 midterm election was unlike any other midterm election in history. A nation held its breath in anticipation after heading to the polls in droves, the likes of which had never been seen before, waiting for the first signs of change. Upon the votes being counted, victories swept the nation, turning the 116th Congress into the most diverse and representative congress in American history. Contributing to this record-breaking group of people are 127 women, nine of whom are newly sworn-in and ready to begin changing the world.

1. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is making history as the youngest woman to be elected to Congress. 

alexandria ocasio-cortex

Representing New York's 14th District, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been sworn in as the youngest woman in Congress at the age of 29. Ocasio-Cortez's platform is one that advocates for gun control, a peace economy, and criminal justice reform, as well as rights for the working class, such as universal healthcare and fair housing.

2. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib become the first Muslim women elected to Congress. 

Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar

Representing Minnesota's 5th District and Michigan's 16th District respectively, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib enter Washington, D.C as the nation's first Muslim women elected to Congress. Both Congresswomen advocate for human rights, environmental protection, and Medicare as a form of universal healthcare.

3. Ayanna Pressley becomes the first African-American woman to be elected to Congress from Massachusetts. 

Ayanna Pressley

Representing the 7th District of Massachusetts, Ayanna Pressley becomes her state's first African-American woman to be elected to Congress. Among Pressley's campaign promises are creating healthy communities via gun control and environmental protection, empowering women and small businesses to create a fair economy, and fighting for those communities under fire by hateful rhetoric.

4. Veronica Escobar joins Sylvia Garcia as the first Latina women elected to Congress from Texas. 

Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia

Representing Texas' 16th and 29th congressional districts respectively, Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia become the first Latina women to represent their state in Congress. Escobar is a passionate advocate for values such as immigration reform, environmental protection, and improving the quality of life for veterans, senior citizens, the disabled, and working families. Garcia is a strong supporter of these issues and more, such as healthcare and equal rights for women and the LGBT community.

5. Deb Haaland and Sharice Davids become the first Native American women elected to Congress. 

Deb Haaland and Sharice Davids

Representing New Mexico's 1st and Kansas's 3rd congressional districts, Deb Haaland and Sharice Davids join Congress as its first female Native American representatives. Haaland and Davids share similar platforms, including issues such as equality and equity for working families, women, and the LGBT communities.

6. Lauren Underwood is the youngest African-American woman to be elected to Congress. 

Lauren Underwood

Representing Illinois's 14th congressional district, Lauren Underwood became the youngest African-American women in Congress at 32 years old. Underwood is passionate about reducing gun violence, improving public education, protecting the environment, and defending immigrants.

These women, with their passion for change and love for humanity, have already begun to change the course of this nation with their election to Congress. Bolstered by their supporters and magnified by their talent, intelligence, and determination, the newly-elected women of the 116th Congress will remind their constituents and the rest of the United States of the power that fresh minds, diverse minds, represented minds can have on history and humanity as a whole.

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I'm The Girl Who'd Rather Raise A Family Than A Feminist Protest Sign

You raise your protest picket signs and I’ll raise my white picket fence.

Social Media feeds are constantly filled with quotes on women's rights, protests with mobs of women, and an array of cleverly worded picket signs.

Good for them, standing up for their beliefs and opinions. Will I be joining my tight-knit family of the same gender?

Nope, no thank you.

Don't get me wrong, I am not going to be oblivious to my history and the advancements that women have fought to achieve. I am aware that the strides made by many women before me have provided us with voting rights, a voice, equality, and equal pay in the workforce.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Who Would Rather Raise A Family Than A Feminist Protest Sign

For that, I am deeply thankful. But at this day in age, I know more female managers in the workforce than male. I know more women in business than men. I know more female students in STEM programs than male students. So what’s with all the hype? We are girl bosses, we can run the world, we don’t need to fight the system anymore.

Please stop.

Because it is insulting to the rest of us girls who are okay with being homemakers, wives, or stay-at-home moms. It's dividing our sisterhood, and it needs to stop.

All these protests and strong statements make us feel like now we HAVE to obtain a power position in our career. It's our rightful duty to our sisters. And if we do not, we are a disappointment to the gender and it makes us look weak.

Weak to the point where I feel ashamed to say to a friend “I want to be a stay at home mom someday.” Then have them look at me like I must have been brain-washed by a man because that can be the only explanation. I'm tired of feeling belittled for being a traditionalist.


Because why should I feel bad for wanting to create a comfortable home for my future family, cooking for my husband, being a soccer mom, keeping my house tidy? Because honestly, I cannot wait.

I will have no problem taking my future husband’s last name, and following his lead.

The Bible appoints men to be the head of a family, and for wives to submit to their husbands. (This can be interpreted in so many ways, so don't get your panties in a bunch at the word “submit”). God specifically made women to be gentle and caring, and we should not be afraid to embrace that. God created men to be leaders with the strength to carry the weight of a family.

However, in no way does this mean that the roles cannot be flipped. If you want to take on the responsibility, by all means, you go girl. But for me personally? I'm sensitive, I cry during horror movies, I'm afraid of basements and dark rooms. I, in no way, am strong enough to take on the tasks that men have been appointed to. And I'm okay with that.

So please, let me look forward to baking cookies for bake sales and driving a mom car.

And I'll support you in your endeavors and climb to the top of the corporate ladder. It doesn't matter what side you are on as long as we support each other, because we all need some girl power.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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Dear America, We Can Step Forward As A Country If We Stop Believing That Only One Belief Is Valid

It's time to promote unity and emphasize our commonalities because only through unity can we step forward as a country.


Dear America,

2018 was a year of political strife and conflict. The left and the right fought constantly. Republicans and Democrats blamed each other for the tiniest mistakes, and there were only a small number of successful bipartisan deals. Politicians and citizens alike seemed more concerned with sticking to party platforms, even ones they truly didn't believe in, rather than compromising with the other side to improve our society.Yet all this name-calling and hatred — what does it do in the end? What does it accomplish?

We've only seen an increased polarization of American politics and an expanded hostility towards "the other side." We don't consider the well-being of each and every person in America and the bettering of our society, or the building of a stronger world for our children and grandchildren.

We spend so much time insulting each other's political beliefs that we forget probably the most important fact that links us all together: We are all human. We all share the same basic needs, the same struggles, the same moments of happiness and sadness.

And yet we are willing to put our similarities aside and only focus on our differences. We are willing to thrust ourselves into the deep anger and loathing that comes in attacking those different from us. We are willing to parry insults behind the safety of a phone screen and forget all about what makes us alike. And we are willing to gloss over the fact that we have more similarities than differences.

SEE ALSO: Dear Trump, Thanks For Transforming Me Into A Responsible, Educated Citizen

Yes, political beliefs make a person. Political beliefs define the values, ideas and thoughts of a person. But sometimes, we have to reach over those beliefs, as hard as that may be, and focus on the bigger picture at hand. What will insulting someone because of those beliefs do? It definitely won't change their views or make them see things from your point of view.

It's sad and frustrating that this endless fighting doesn't even occur between two countries or two governments or two nation-states. Instead, we see arguments and strife between two family members, two neighbors or even two strangers, all living in the same community and under the same government, all sharing more similarities than differences.

We need to stop focusing so much on singular ideas. We need to stop believing in the close-minded idea that only one thought is the best thought. And instead of wasting energy trying to change other's opinions, we need to use that energy and time to promote unity and emphasize our commonalities.

These past few years have truly divided America. Let's make 2019 a year of unity, because only through unity can we step forward as a country.

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