Paulette Jordan, a Democrat, is running for governor of Idaho. Courtesy photo

A record number of Native candidates are running for office in 2018

More than 80 Native Americans are running for office across the nation and some are hoping to make history at the ballot boxes this year.

Among those are a handful of Native women who are seeking seats in the U.S. House and in the U.S. Senate. There's Deb Haaland in New Mexico, Sharice Davids in Kansas, Amanda Douglas in Oklahoma and Eve Reyes Aguirre in Arizona.

Success in any one of those races would be monumental. Other than Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), who has claimed to be "part Native", there's never been a Native woman in Congress.

“It’s not like, as a person of color or as an American Indian woman, you can walk into a room and say: ‘I’m qualified,’ and everybody looks at you like that,” Denise Juneau, who lost her 2016 campaign in Montana, told The New York Times. “You have to prove it. And we will — eventually.”

Mark Trahant, the new editor of Indian Country Today, has been keeping tally of Native candidates for U.S. Congress, as well as those for state legislatures. His lists presently show 84 in the running.

In addition to those candidates, three Native citizens are on gubernatorial tickets. Two of those are women: Peggy Flanagan in Minnesota and Paulette Jordan in Idaho.

Read More on the Story:
There’s Never Been a Native American Congresswoman. That Could Change in 2018. (The New York Times March 19, 2018)

Join the Conversation
Trending in News
More Headlines