Women Win Big in Virginia

Nov 7, 2018

 

Seventh District Congress-woman elect Abigail Spanberger, left, greets a fan after a rally in Richmond.
Credit Steve Helber / AP

 

Yesterday, Virginians elected three new congress-women to represent the state on Capitol Hill. It was one of the largest gains for women in the country.


As Democrat Abigail Spanberger gave her victory speech in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District she held her young daughter in her arms. Speaking with reporters after, Spanberger says it feels fantastic to be part of a wave of new female representation.

“And I think it will change what we see happening in Congress come January,” Spanberger said.

In addition to Spanberger, Democrats Elaine Luria and Jennifer Wexton also won election Tuesday night.

“Virginia’s gain of three women is comparable to some states. But it is among the top,” says Kelly Dittmar with the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.

Dittmar says female candidates proved especially adept this year at flipping districts.

“If you look at the total number of red to blue districts, for example, women are a significant proportion of the winners in those places.”

And in Virginia those places were the suburbs. Spanberger won just west of Richmond, while Wexton won the neighborhoods outside of D.C.

 

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.