First Gay Governor Elected as Women of Color Make History in House and Senate

Gene Maddaus

Jared Polis was declared the winner of the Colorado governor’s race on Tuesday, becoming the first openly gay governor in the nation, and leading a wave of “firsts” across the nation.

Sharice Davids and Deb Haaland of New Mexico were elected the first Native American women in Congress. Davids, an attorney, is also the state’s first lesbian congresswoman and is an ex-MMA fighter and member of the Ho-Chunk Nation.

Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota also won their races, making them the first two Muslim women in the House.

Democrats Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia have become the first Latina women elected to Congress in Texas, taking two House seats. Escobar will represent the 16th congressional district, taking the place of Beto O’Rourke, who lost his Senate race to incumbent Ted Cruz. Her district includes El Paso. Garcia will represent Texas’ 29th congressional district, which includes Houston and Pasadena.

Several other candidates made history within their states. Republican Marsha Blackburn became the first female senator from Tennessee, defeating Phil Bredesen. Ayanna Pressley won her election in Massachusetts, making her the first black woman to represent that state in Congress.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, in New York, will also become the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. Oscasio-Cortez campaigned as an ultra-liberal Democratic Socialist.

However, Stacey Abrams of Georgia is trailing in her race to become the nation’s first African-American female governor.

(Pictured: Ayanna Presley, Jared Polis, Rashida Tlaib)

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