When the 111th Congress convenes in January, 2009, more women than ever before will serve in the U.S. Congress － 17 women in the U.S. Senate (13 Democrat, 4 Republican) and at least 74 women in the U.S. House of Representatives (57 Democrat, 17 Republican).
According to the Center for American Women and Politics, even though the number of women candidates wasn't at an all-time high for this year's elections, women were clearly positioned for success.
The breakdown (or rampup) looks like this:
Senate － 17 women today, prior record was 16
- 4 women won Senate elections (13 incumbents didn't face re-election)
- 3 Democrats, 1 Republican
- 2 incumbents, 2 challengers
- representing Louisiana, Maine, North Carolina, New Hampshire
House － 74 (with two races still pending) women today, prior record was 71
- 10 new women and 64 incumbents won House elections
- 8 Democrats, 2 Republicans
- 5 won open seats, 5 won against incumbents
- representing AZ, CO, FL, IL, KS, ME, NV, OH, PA, WY
- 12 African-Americans, 7 Latinas and 2 Asian-Americans