January 3, 2019 is a historic day as a record number of women begin serving in the 116th Congress - 106 in the U.S. House and 25 in the U.S. Senate.
Three of those women are from Iowa and two are new to Washington, DC. U.S. Senator Joni Ernst has been in office since 2015, but there are two new faces in the U.S. House - U.S. Representative Cindy Axne from Iowa's Third District and U.S. Representative Abby Finkenauer from Iowa's First District.
It's a big win for the organization - 50-50 in 2020. It's a non-profit, non-partisan group based in Des Moines, Iowa that wants women to be equally represented in all political arenas in Iowa - including the Iowa Senate, Iowa House, Governor's Office, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House.
On January 3, 2019, the organization's Executive Director - Melissa Gesing - had "Breakfast With..." Good Morning Quad Cities. She talked about the records broken in Iowa during the 2018 election and what needs to be done in 2019. Click the video above to see that part of our conversation.
50-50 in 2020 was founded in 2010 by a Republican and a Democrat from Iowa - former State Senators Maggie Tinsman and Jean Lloyd-Jones. At that time, 32 women served in the Iowa Legislature and Iowa was one of just two states that had never elected a woman Governor, nor sent a woman to the U.S. Congress. In 2019, things are much different with 45 women serving in the Iowa Legislature, Governor Kim Reynolds being elected, and more. Click the video below to hear what the next step is for 50-50 in 2020:
If you are interested in running for office, there is a big event coming up in March in Des Moines. Gesing talked about that event and other ways you can get involved during our Facebook Live on the WQAD Facebook Page: