Women in Congress

House Democratic women flex muscles with formal caucus, plus a political arm
On Equal Pay Day, new caucus touts expanded leadership team

From left, Reps. Lois Frankel, D-Fla., Veronica Escobar, D-Texas, Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., Mary Gay Scanlon, D-Pa., Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., Brenda Lawrence, D-Mich., Karen Bass, D-Calif., and Madeleine Dean, D-Pa., members of the newly named Democratic Women's Caucus, hold a news conference Feb. 5 about their decision to wear white to the State of the Union. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democratic women, armed with more numbers and the power of the majority, are getting  organized, switching their working group to a more formal caucus and launching a political action committee to help further grow their ranks.

The Democratic Women’s Caucus is the new name of the Democratic Women’s Working Group. Open to all 91 House Democratic women, the caucus will be led by an expanded leadership team of three co-chairs and two vice chairs.

Six States Will Boast All-Women Senate Delegations in 2019
Martha McSally appointment in Arizona sets makeup for 116th Congress

A record of six states will be represented by two women in the Senate in the new congress, a phenomenon made possible by the appointment of Martha McSally to an Arizona Senate seat. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The appointment of GOP Rep. Martha McSally to the late Sen. John McCain’s Arizona Senate seat for the new year will push the chamber to a new milestone: The Senate in the 116th Congress will have the highest number of all-women delegations in history.

Six states will be represented by two women in the Senate in the new congress, surpassing the previous record of four states, which was the case in 2011 and again in 2012, 2013 and 2018.

Women Elected at Historic Levels, But No Surprise Here: White Men Dominate 116th Congress
Number of veterans down

A record number of women will be heading to Congress and there will be more minority lawmakers, but white men will still make up most of Congress. Above, supporters celebrate Jennifer Wexton's victory in Virginia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The 116th Congress is on track to be one of the most diverse in history, but the legislature will still be overwhelmingly white and male compared to the overall U.S. population. Historic numbers of women won seats in the midterm contests, but the number of veterans is likely to fall or stay flat. 

At least 96 women running for the House have won their races, shattering the previous record of 84 women in the House. Eighty-three of the women who won were Democrats.

Will 2018 Be the New Year of the Woman?
With new senator, the 115th Congress now boasts the most women to date

Minnesota Sen. Tina Smith is administered an oath by Vice President Mike Pence during a mock swearing-in ceremony in the Capitol’s Old Senate Chamber on Jan. 3. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

With the seating of Minnesota Democrat Sen. Tina Smith on Tuesday, Jan. 3, the 115th Congress is now able to claim 106 female members — the most of any Congress to date.

Smith is the 51st woman to serve in the Senate since the first was appointed in 1922. There are currently 22 female senators serving, an all-time high for the chamber, and 84 women serving as voting representatives in the House (just one below the record of 85 set in 2015).

Podcast: Women's Political Power in the Age of Trump
The Big Story, Episode 77

Marilyn Gates-Davis, CQ Magazine

Donald Trump's presidency has encouraged women to make campaign contributions in unprecedented numbers. Will more women run for Congress, too? CQ lobbying reporter Kate Ackley and Roll Call political reporter Simone Pathé explain.

Rating Change: Utah GOP Congresswoman Less Safe for Re-Election
Personal and national factors make Mia Love's race worth watching

Rep. Mia Love may not be a sure bet for re-election in Utah's 4th District, according to a recent poll. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A recent public poll showing Republican Rep. Mia Love trailing Democratic challenger Doug Owens by 6 points doesn’t smell quite right. But the congresswoman could still be in for a competitive race, even though Utah’s 4th District isn’t a typical swing seat.  

The June 2-8 automated poll conducted by SurveyUSA for The Salt Lake Tribune and the Hinckley Institute showed Owens with a 51-45 percent advantage in a hypothetical general election matchup. Operatives on both sides of the aisle are skeptical of the polling numbers, but Democrats are determined to defeat Love and some Republicans concede that the race is worth watching.