With 9 women governors, US ties record
Similar records have gone unbeaten at least three times
6 female democrats and 3 Republicans currently serve as governors
19 states in US have never had female governors
With Kathy Hochul taking over as the governor for the state of New York on Tuesday, a total of nine women are now serving as governors in the United States. The figures tie a record, which has gone unbeaten three times.
Nine women have previously been governors of different states in the country in 2004, 2007 and 2019. However, this number has never gone beyond nine, keeping gender proportionality far from being achieved in terms of political representation.
Hochul made history on Tuesday after being sworn in as the first-ever female governor of the state of New York. Hochul, a member of the Democratic party and former member of Congress from western New York, took the oath of office just after midnight in a brief, private event overseen by the state’s chief judge, Janet DiFiore, according to reports from Associated Press.
Kate Brown (Oregon), Gretchen Whitmer (Michigan), Michelle Lujam Grisham (New Mexico), Janet Mills (Maine), Laura Kelly (Kansas) and Kathy Hochul (New York) are the democratic state governors in the United States who currently occupy the office.
Meanwhile female Republican governors include Kristy Noem (South Dakota), Kim Reynolds (Iowa) and Kay Ivey (Alabama).
According to reports from CNN, there are 19 states in the US that have never had a female governor. These include Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Dakota, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.
Women currently hold 18% of governors' offices — significantly less than this year's new records of 27% of U.S. congressional seats and 31% of state legislative seats. In addition, Vice President Kamala Harris also became the first woman in that role this year, according to reports from Associated Press.
“New York as a whole has been a tough place for women to break into the highest levels, because there is very much a tight set of powerful gatekeepers," said Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.