by Erin Gloria Ryan / jezebel.com
Yesterday, a record 101 women were sworn in as members of the US House of Representatives and Senate, which means that now, a mere 80% of federal elected officials are male. Woo! Girl power! It’s the end of men! But before we get ahead of ourselves celebrating women’s total 20% domination of the legislative branch, let’s take a minute to get to know a cocktail party fact about each of the 101 women who will be spending at least the next several weeks pretending to usher in a new era of bipartisanship in Washington.
Glowing, hopeful writeups of the 113th Congress describe the lawmakers sworn into office as the most diverse group in the history of the country. Still, 19 states — Alaska, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia — didn’t send any women to the House of Representatives this time around and all of those states except Alaska, Louisiana, Nebraska, and North Dakota are without female Senate representation as well. Still, both of California’s Senators are female and the entirety of New Hampshire’s Washington legislative delegation are women. So, progress. Kind of.
And now, without further ado, here are some fascinatingly share-able tidbits about the ladies who legislate, from Allyson Schwartz to Zoe Lofgren.
1. Allyson Y. Schwartz (D) PA Schwartz served as the executive director of a Philadelphia Planned Parenthood clinic from 1975 until 1988.
2. Amy Klobuchar (D) MN Sen. Klobuchar’s senior thesis at Yale was about the politicking around the building of the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, ex-home of the Minnesota Twins and the world’s crappiest place to watch a sporting event.
3. Ann Kirkpatrick (D) AZ Kirkpatrick was raised on an Apache Indian reservation.
4. Ann McLane Kuster (D) NH Her great-grandfather was elected Governor of New Hampshire in 1904.
5. Ann Wagner (R) MO Wagner is the former ambassador to Luxembourg and currently occupies Todd Akin’s old House seat.
6. Anna G. Eshoo (D) CA Eshoo has served in Congress since 1993, and has never won with less than 57% of the vote.
7. Barbara Boxer (D) CA When she ran for a seat in the House of Representatives in 1982, the future Senator Boxer won with the campaign slogan “Barbara Boxer Gives a Damn.”
8. Barbara Lee (D) CA Lee was the only member of either house of Congress to vote against authorizing use of force after the September 11th attacks.
9. Barbara Mikulski (D) MD Rumor has it that Bill Clinton wanted Al Gore to choose Mikulski as his running mate during the 2000 elections rather than Sen. Joe Lieberman.
10. Betty McCollum (D) MN McCollum has caused conservatives to flip their shit twice in the last couple of years — once when she supported an amendment to a bill that would have stopped military sponsorship of NASCAR teams and once when she was recorded on video omitting the phrase “Under God” from the pledge of allegiance. SOMEONE FETCH ME THE FOX NEWS SMELLING SALTS!
11. Candice Miller (R) MI Candice Miller did not graduate from college.
12. Carol Shea-Porter (D) NH Volunteered in New Orleans post-Hurricane Katrina and was so disgusted by the federal government’s slow response to the disaster that she ran for Congress.
13. Carolyn Maloney (D) NY This tough-ass broad is the one who asked “Where are the women?!” during that infamous all-male panel on birth control last year.