Record-breaking 30,000 women ready to run for office in 2018

Eight Democratic women in Southern California have already filed paperwork and raised money to run for Republican-held congressional seats.

The grassroots revolution continues to expand, and now more than 30,000 women are ready to run for office and fight back against Donald Trump.

That’s how many women EMILY’s List has heard from since Election Day in 2016 expressing interest in becoming candidates.

“These 30,000 women are the next generation of leaders and candidates — and they will change the face of politics and power in this country forever,” says Stephanie Schriock, president of the group that trains and funds pro-choice women and helps them run for office.

For context, in 2015 and 2016, a grand total of 900 women contacted EMILY’s List about running for office during that election cycle. So the 30,000 number is completely off the charts.

And it continues to expand. By August of 2017, 16,000 women had contacted EMILY’s List. Today it’s 30,000.

Republican incumbents in Southern California are facing this wave first-hand.

With six weeks left before the March 9 filing deadline, at least eight Democratic women have filed paperwork and raised money to run in five Southern California seats, currently occupied by Reps. Darrell Issa, Steve Knight, Dana Rohrabacher, Ed Royce, and Mimi Walters.

Given Trump’s unpopularity in California as a whole (more than 6 in 10 disapprove of him), and even in Republican strongholds like Orange County where only one in three voters approves of Trump, these Republicans face an uphill battle this fall.

Outside of just Southern California, “390 women are planning to run for the House of Representatives, a figure that’s higher than at any point in American history,” New York magazine reports this week. “Twenty-two of them are non-incumbent black women — for scale, there are only 18 black women in the House right now. Meanwhile, 49 women are likely to be running for the Senate, more than 68 percent higher than the number who’d announced at the same point in 2014.”

By comparison, Republicans can’t even find possible candidates to contest key Democrats.

“Republican leaders have failed to secure their top-choice candidate in eight of the 10 Senate races in states that Trump won in 2016, and Florida Gov. Rick Scott has yet to commit to his expected run for Sen. Bill Nelson’s seat,” Politico recently reported.

But the grassroots revolution underway isn’t just about women running for the House and the Senate, or running for governor. It’s about women running for every possible public office, most often on a state or very local levels.

“What should worry Trump and his Republicans most isn’t just that Democratic women are running — but that they’re winning,” Schriock said, pointing to the incredible victory in Virginia last November, where Democrats flipped 11 seats in the House of Delegates, and to the EMILY’s List-endorsed candidate Patty Schachtner, who flipped a state Senate seat in Wisconsin this week, in a district Trump won by 17 points.

Schachtner was the 34th Democrat to flip a red state legislature seat since Trump’s inauguration.

Meanwhile, the stampede away from Trump and the GOP among women voters has likely been unprecedented for any first-year president.

Asked which party they would vote for in the midterm elections, 64 percent of American women in a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll said they would pull the lever for a Democratic candidate, compared to just 29 percent for Republicans — a stunning 35-point advantage for Democrats.

“One year into Trump’s presidency, and the message is clear: Women aren’t backing down, and we’re going to win,” Schriock said.

Trump truly is inspirational.