In Praise of Women Running for Office and Marching to the Polls

Suzanne Baker
Naperville Sun

The 6th Congressional District race is indicative of a wave that is rolling across the nation.

Of the seven candidates vying for the opportunity to run head-to-head against incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam this November, five are women.

In record numbers women are jumping into political races. As of mid-December, more than 600 women registered to appear on the ballot for federal and statewide offices across the country, according to statistics gathered by the Rutgers University Eagleton Institute of Politics and its Center for American Women and Politics.

The biggest increase is in the number of female U.S. House candidates, 414, which includes 328 Democrats and 86 Republicans, according to data as of Tuesday from the Rutgers center.

“That increase is entirely among Democratic women,” said Kelly Dittmar, a scholar with the Rutgers center. It also is almost four times the number at the same time in 2015.

The groundswell began about a year ago, after President Donald Trump was elected.

Dittmar said the women’s marches last January and this coming Saturday are, in part, the result of concerns about the policies and messages from Trump and his administration related to such topics as gender equality, health-care reform, reproductive rights and religious freedoms.

The protests also served as a wake-up call for READ MORE

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