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Freshmen Democratic women raise more than $14 million to keep House majority

Dozens of new women from around the country propelled Democrats to a House majority, and they have no intention of leaving any time soon.

By Dan Desai Martin - July 17, 2019
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Rep. Lucy McBath

Freshmen Democratic women are building a war chest to ensure their history-making efforts in 2018 can be replicated in 2020. In just the past three months, the 25 freshman congresswomen re-endorsed by the EMILYs List raised more than $14 million, according to data the group collected from the Federal Elections Commission (FEC).

EMILYs List, a group dedicated to electing more pro-choice Democratic women at all levels of government, also shared with Shareblue Media that the incumbents they have re-endorsed have raised a total of almost $27 million to date.

“Democratic women in the House have been working hard on and off the campaign trail, and these impressive fundraising amounts serve as proof that their efforts are being noticed,” said Kristen Hernandez, deputy director of campaign communications, in a statement to Shareblue. “EMILY’s List is proud to continue helping these candidates win re-election in seats they flipped last year.”

Republicans are already worried about the fundraising prowess of freshman Democrats on the whole. “Freshmen raising such a big amount so quickly — that causes real concern,” Doug Heye, a veteran GOP strategist, told the National Journal.

Rep. Katie Porter, an Orange County Democrat who is one of seven new members who flipped a California seat from red to blue, raised more than $1 million between March and June. “The strength of my campaign comes from grassroots supporters, who are energized by my work in holding special interests accountable and standing up for Orange County families,” Porter said in a statement.

She narrowly bested her fellow Californian, Rep. Katie Hill, who clocked in just shy of $733,000. Both women have raised more than $1.5 million so far this year.

A total of 18 EMILY’s List-endorsed freshmen Democratic women who raised more than half a million dollars in the last quarter include Reps. Lucy McBath (GA), Lauren Underwood (IL), Eilssa Slotkin (MI), Xochitl Torres Small (NM), and Jennifer Wexton (VA).

As Democratic women flex their political power, Republicans have had a notoriously difficult time attracting women candidates and electing Republican women. As a result of the 2018 midterms, Republicans have only 13 women in the House, even though the House now has a record number of women in total: 102.

Since then, the top Republican tasked with electing more Republicans, Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN), said it was a “mistake” for the party to focus on electing women. In June, the Republican tapped to recruit more women to run in 2020, Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN), opted to retire rather than stick around for another run.

While Republicans struggle, Democratic women are busy raising the funds they need to keep a House majority in 2020 and beyond.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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