The 2020 presidential female candidates have already made history in the race. Five Democratic women have already confirmed their entrance in the 2020 race, which marked the first time in history that more than one woman has run for the party's nomination.
The first Democratic female candidate to join the race was Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). She officially launched her campaign on February 9th during a speech in her home state. The Massachusetts Democrat stated that she's running because the "the problem we've got right now in Washington is that it works great for those who've got money to buy influence, and I'm fighting against that, and you bet it's going to make a lot of people unhappy."
Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii's Second District), a 37-year old lawmaker from Hawaii, one of the youngest candidates running the in the race, has also launched her campaign. She's one of the first two female combat veterans and the first Hindu member to ever serve in Congress. She's been described as the antithesis of the current POTUS: young, female, progressive, and experienced in war.
One candidate whose campaign has gained traction is Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA). Harris is the daughter of two immigrants-- her father is from Jamaica and her mother is from India. Like some of her fellow female candidates, she's used to being the "first" of many things. She's the first Indian American woman in the Senate and the only black woman serving in the upper chamber. Her campaign slogan, "Kamala Harris, for the people," was inspired by her work as a prosecutor and attorney general in California.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) announced her bid earlier this month and gave her kickoff speech in Manhattan just last weekend. As a senator, she famously cracked down on sexual assault in the military, worked on the repeal of the "don't ask don't tell," the policy that prohibited the LGBTQ+ community from openly serving in the military, and pushed for a ban on insider trading for members of Congress. Many of the points she has made throughout her campaign thus far have been about empowering women and striving for equality, which is evident through her public support of the #MeToo movement.
The most recent announcement came from Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). Klobuchar, 58, has been characterized as more moderate than her fellow runners, which could help her get the support of independents and centrists. Known for her crackdown on big tech firms, Klobuchar's focus on privacy and antitrust may be what differentiates her from the other candidates. She may not be as popular the other Democratic candidates, but she showed great success in turning around red counties in her reelection.
What is more remarkable than their accomplishments as senators and representatives are the diversity that they've brought to the 2020 race already. Kelly Dittmar, a professor at Rutgers University and a scholar at the university's Center for American Women and Politics has noted that the unique qualities each female candidate, whether it's age, race, or ideology, is changing the "homogeneous ideal type" of a woman running for higher office. "I think that any time we have more women running, and greater diversity among those women, it just challenges those monolithic conceptions of what it means to be a woman candidate," Dittmar said.
It shouldn't come as a surprise how many women have entered the race. Indeed, women were the dominant gender in 2016 and 2018 Democratic primaries. Hillary Clinton famously won the Democratic nomination in 2016, and over 50% of women who ran in Democratic House primaries won in 2018. The 2018 primaries made history in the fact that more women were nominated than ever before.
These statistics can conclude that voters are no longer afraid of voting for women. In fact, it seems as though Democratic voters want women to win. A CBS News poll taken in 2015 posed an open-ended question to Clinton's supporters of why they want her to be the nominee, and the second most popular answer was "it's time for a woman president."
It is too early to predict results for these women, but all signs are pointing to promising results in the 2020 race. But indeed, it is time for a woman to be in the oval office.