A record number of women are slated to serve in the next Congress, as enough female candidates have secured victories this week, while the vote counting for many congressional races continues.
According to figures released on Thursday afternoon by Rutgers University’s Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), which tracks women’s political participation in the US, at least 131 women, made up of 100 Democrats and 31 Republicans, will serve in the 117th Congress, reported The Hill.
The number is a small jump from the record set by the current Congress, which began with 127 women at the start of 2019.
So far 106 female candidates, including 83 Democrats and 23 Republicans have won their races in the House of Representatives, which surpassed the record of 102 women who were elected to the House for the current Congress, according to CAWP. However, this number could change soon, since 29 races have been not yet been called.
According to The Hill, this year witnessed a record of 583 women running for the House, which is more than 20 per cent from the high set in 2018, which saw 476 women running. Although the record in 2018 was largely due to Democratic women, the spike this year was partly driven by Republican women, while the Democratic women maintained their high numbers from two years back.
Meanwhile, for the Senate, CAWP stated that only 25 women are set to serve in the chamber next year as of Thursday afternoon, which includes 17 Democrats and eight Republicans. However, that number could also drop, pending Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris’s and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s outcome in the election.
The record for women to serve in the Senate was set during the current Congress, with 26 women, according to CAWP.
“Advances for women must come from both sides of the aisle if women are to achieve equal representation in Congress,” The Hill quoted Debbie Walsh, director of the political unit.
(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)