June 8, 2016
Refinery29: This State's U.S. Senate Race Is Going To Be Historic For An Amazing Reason
by Andrea Gonzalez-Ramirez
Hillary Clinton joined supporters in Brooklyn Tuesday night to celebrate becoming the first female presumptive presidential nominee for a major political party. But she wasn't the only woman in politics making history that night.
About 3,000 miles away, two more female politicians each became poised to break a major barrier.
California Attorney General Kamala Harris and Rep. Loretta Sanchez will face off in the November election for a U.S. Senate seat representing California. The two Democrats came in first and second in the Golden State's primary, which sends the top two finishers regardless of party affiliation to the general election.
Both are women of color and daughters of immigrants — which means a win for either would be monumental. There’s currently only one woman of color in the chamber: Mazie Hirono, an Asian-American senator representing Hawaii. And there has only been one Black female senator in the history of U.S. politics. A Latina has never held a U.S. Senate seat.
“Most of the time, I’m the only woman and the only minority in the room,” Harris told MSNBC on Friday.
The attorney general, daughter of Jamaican and Indian immigrants, has the endorsement of Emily’s List, a powerful donor network which aims to help elect Democratic women who support abortion rights. She won 40% of the votes during the primary, while Sanchez, a second-generation Mexican-American, trailed behind with only 18%. In total, 34 candidates competed in the race to replace retiring Sen. Barbara Boxer.
But as the general elections get closer, that lead may be reduced, according to The Huffington Post.
Another Latina aiming for a seat in the Senate is Catherine Cortez Masto, former state attorney general, who is representing Nevada. As a pro-choice Democratic candidate in a red-leaning state, Cortez Masto also has the support of Emily's List.
There's still five months to go before the general elections, but people all over the United States are already finding reason to rejoice, regardless of whom they support. History will definitely be made this fall.