Sharice Davids Heads to DC to Kick Ass


Photo by Whitney Curtis/Getty Images

Praise Sappho, Sharice Davids is headed to Congress representing Kansas’ third district.

On Tuesday, we saw many victories for women in politics, including over 100 newcomers. Some of the most exciting wins were firebrand progressive Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, the first Muslim women elected to the House, Deb Haaland one of two Native women elected, and Letitia James who will serve as New York’s Attorney General, Sylvia Garcia and Veronica Escobar, who will serve as Texas’ first Latina reps.

Out lesbian, lawyer, Obama fellow and former MMA fighter (!!) Sharice Davids will be representing so much more than her home district when she arrives in DC.

Kansas’ third district is a swing in an otherwise red state. But in this election, Democrat Davids absolutely spanked incumbent Republican Kevin Yoder. The broad appeal may be due in part to the fact that Yoder was viewed as a Congressional layabout, or because Davids campaign materials skew centrist with broad generalizations about lowering health care costs and improving schools.

However, in speeches where she has more of a chance to express herself, she sounds progressive. Particularly on gay rights issues, where she spoke out passionately against the Kansas decision to allow faith-based, publicly-funded adoption agencies to refuse lesbian and gay applicants.

Over a hundred Native Americans ran for office this cycle and over half were women. But only two were elected. We have a long way to go toward adequately representing Native Americans’ interests or putting Native Americans in office, an especially hard battle to fight since so many Native Americans have had their votes loopholed, gerrymandered, or otherwise suppressed.

The lesbian community would do well to rally around Davids as she finds her voice as a politician. With a little finesse to her public speaking and a few terms’ legislating experience, someday she may be representing more than Kansas’ third.