This year has been referred to as the “Year of the Woman” in politics, and there is ample evidence to support this label. Data from Rutger’s Center for Women and American Politics indicates 235 women have captured the Democratic or Republican nomination for the House, surpassing the previous high of 167. In state legislative races across the country, there are over 3,300 women running in the general elections, beating the previous high of just over 2,600 set in 2016.
North Carolina, however, is not experiencing a surge in women candidates to the same degree as many states. The total number of women running for all offices in the state has declined from 2014 and 2016.
There are some bright spots for women candidates in North Carolina. There was a 26 percent increase in the number of women running for the state legislature, but this figure is tempered by the fact that there was a 27 percent overall increase in the number of candidates running. This means the relative number of women running did not increase.
In terms of other offices, the number of women running for Congress is the same as it has been in the last two election cycles, but fewer women are running for county-level offices in the state or for the judiciary.
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