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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.