US midterm elections: A look at the House's 'firsts'

Published: 07th November 2018 06:20 PM  |   Last Updated: 07th November 2018 07:11 PM  

The high-profile 2018 midterm elections in the US delivered several significant firsts as voters came out in record numbers to elect the first two Muslim women, the youngest woman ever in Congress and the nation's first openly gay governor. (Photo | AP)
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: New York Democratic congressional nominee Alexandria won her general election race easily and became the youngest woman ever in Congress. Ocasio-Cortez, who turned 29 last month, had defeated Joe Crowley, among the top Democrats, in the primary election earlier this year in a stunning victory. Daughter of Puerto Rican parents, she had previously worked as an organizer on Vermont independent Senator Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign. (Photo | AP)
Rashida Tlaib
Rashida Tlaib (First Palestinian-American woman in Congress): Michigan Democrat Tlaib was famously escorted from a Trump rally in 2016 as she shouted questions at the candidate, asking him if he had ever read the constitution. The Democratic-Socialist, who served on the state legislature from 2009 to 2014, will fill the seat formerly occupied by Michigan Democratic Rep. John Conyers, who left office last year amid sexual misconduct accusations. (Photo | Twitter/Rashida Tlaib)
Ilhan Omar
Ilhan Omar (First Muslim woman with African roots in Congress): The Somali-American Congresswoman came to the US more than two decades ago as a refugee. She will take the seat vacated by Minnesota Representative Keith Ellison. Omar's agenda includes subsidizing higher education costs for low-income students. (Photo | AP)
Jared Polis
Jared Polis (Nation's first openly gay man elected to the governor's office): The Colorado Democratic representative ran on a leftwing platform, which included single-payer healthcare, repeal of the death penalty, universal full-day preschool and stronger gun laws. An advocate of marijuana legalization, Polis will succeed Democratic Gov John Hickenlooper. Oregon Democratic Governor Kate Brown, who identifies as bisexual, is already the first openly LGBT person to be elected as governor. (Photo | AP)
Ayanna Pressley
Ayanna Pressley (First black woman elected to the House from Massachusetts): In 2009, Pressley was the first African-American elected to the Boston City Council. Before that, she worked as an aide to Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy and Sen. John Kerry. The 44-year-old Democrat sailed through Tuesday's general election unopposed, two months after a surprise unseating of 10-term Rep. Michael Capuano in the state primary, an upset victory that drew comparisons to that of Ocasio-Cortez. (Photo | AP)
Sharice Davids, Deb Haaland (First Native American congresswomen): There has only been one previous Native American in Congress: Ben Nighthorse Campbell, who represented Colorado for three terms in the Senate. Haaland, 57, a tribal member of the Laguna Pueblo who was born in Winslow, Arizona, defeated a crowded field of mainly Hispanic candidates in the Democratic primary. Sharice Davids introduced herself to voters with a video of her kicking a large punching bag, then upended politics in deep-red Kansas by ousting a Republican incumbent and becoming the first LGBT Native American elected to Congress. (Photos | AP)
Abby Finkenauer
Abby Finkenauer (First congresswoman from Iowa): Abby Finkenauer on Tuesday became the second-youngest woman elected to Congress. 10 months older to Ocasio-Cortez, she is also still paying off her student loans. Finkenauer knocked off two-term Republican incumbent Rep. Rod Blum in a fiercely contested race. (Photo | AP)
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