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A Historic Number of Women Are Running for Congress

Hillary Clinton
AP Photo/Rick Rycroft

The natural response to our president being a misogynistic man child. 

When America elects a shockingly misogynistic man child to the presidency who once called Hillary Clinton a "nasty woman," it's only natural that, a year later, women would rise up in records numbers and fight back.

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That's what happened last week when the ballots in Virginia and New Jersey featured the highest number of women running for office in a decade. In Virginia, this swell of women running for office led to huge gains: Virginia's 100-person House of Delegates will go from 17 women to as many as 29 women next year (at least one race is still being recounted).

Ahead of next year's huge elections, this could signal a big shift towards gender equality in Congress. Right now, only 19 percent of lawmakers in the U.S. House and 21 percent of those in the Senate are women. That could all change next year, according to new data. In 2016, 272 women filed to run for the U.S. House of Representatives, while in this cycle, 353 are already running, according to the nonpartisan research center, the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP).

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While many women could drop out before the deadlines next year, some women have already begun their campaigns. In Florida, Anna Eskamani, a 27-year-old public affairs director at Planned Parenthood and an Iranian-American, has raised over $140,000 for her campaign to become a state representative. "When you put last year's election in perspective with all the stories of sexual assault and harassment and the fact that this has been happening for generations," she said to Vice, "that couples with this upcoming election cycle. The personal is very political."

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Chris Thomas