Women in State Legislatures 2018

In 2018, 1,865, or 25.3% of the 7,383 state legislators in the United States are women. Women currently hold 446, or 22.6%, of the 1,972 state senate seats and 1,419, or 26.2%, of the 5,411 state house or assembly seats. Since 1971, the number of women serving in state legislatures has more than quintupled.

The party breakdown for women serving in state legislatures in 2018 is:

  Total Legislators State Senators State Reps.
Democrats 1,136 60.9% 255 57.2% 881 62.1%
Republicans 702 37.6% 175 39.2% 527 37.1%
Nonpartisans* 14 0.8% 14 3.1% - -
Working Families Party 1 0.1% - - 1 0.1%
Independents 7 0.4% 2 0.4% 5 0.4%
Progressives 5 0.3% - - 5 0.4%
TOTAL 1,865 100.1% 446 99.9% 1,419 100.1%

* In Nebraska, where the legislature is unicameral, legislators are elected on a nonpartisan basis.

Top 10 States
Arizona (41.1%) 
Vermont (40.0%)
Nevada (39.7%) 
Colorado (38.0%)
Washington (37.4%)
Illinois (35.0%)
Maine (33.9%)
Minnesota (32.3%)
Oregon (32.2%)
Maryland (31.9%)
Bottom 10 States
Wyoming (11.1%)
Oklahoma (13.4%)
West Virginia (13.4%)
South Carolina (14.1%)
Mississippi (14.9%)
Alabama (15.0%)
Louisiana (15.3%)
Tennessee (15.9%)
Kentucky (16.7%)
North Dakota (18.4%)

State Legislative Leadership

11 women serve as presidents of senates or presidents pro tempore:

Debbie Lesko (R-AZ)
Anitere Flores (R-FL)
Michelle Kidani (D-HI)
Susan Wagle (R-KS)
Tonya Schuitmaker (R-MI)
Michelle L. Fischbach (R-MN)

Sharon Carson (R-NH)
Nia Gill (D-NJ)
Mary Kay Papen (D-NM)
Laurie Monnes Anderson (D-OR)
Donna J. Boley (R-WV)
 
6 women serve as speakers of state houses:
Crisanta Duran (D-CO)
Linda L. Upmeyer (R-IA)
Sara Gideon (D-ME)
Tina Kotek (D-OR)
Beth Harwell (R-TN)
Mitzi Johnson (D-VT)
 

Women of Color

  • 450 (24.1%) of the 1,865 women state legislators serving nationwide are women of color (110 senators, 340 representatives; 423D, 25R, 1Prg., 1WFP).
  • Women of color constitute 6.1% of the total 7,383 state legislators. 

More information on women of color in elective office available here

 
 

State Legislative Firsts

1894: First 3 women state legislators elected to the Colorado State House of Representatives (Clara Cressingham, Carrie C. Holly, and Frances Klock).

1896: First woman state senator elected in Utah (Martha Hughes Cannon).

For other important state legislative firsts, visit the Milestones for Women in American Politics page

Women in State Legislatures 2018 - State by State List

  State Senate Total Women/ House Total Women/ Total Women/ %Women
State Rank D R I** Total Senate D R I** Total House Total Legis. Overall
AL 45 3 0 1 4/ 35 12 5 - 17/ 105 21/ 140 15.0
AK 14 1 5 - 6/ 20 3 9 - 12/ 40 18/ 60 30.0
AZ 1 6 9 - 15/ 30 13 9 - 22/ 60 37/ 90 41.1
AR 40 3 4 - 7/ 35 3 15 - 18/ 100 25/ 135 18.5
CA 32 6 3 - 9/ 40 15 3 - 18/ 80 27/ 120 22.5
CO 4 8 2 1 11/ 35 18 9 - 27/ 65 38/ 100 38.0
CT 21 7 2 - 9/ 36 21 21 - 42/ 151 51/ 187 27.3
DE 34 3 1 - 4/ 21 7 2 - 9/ 41 13/ 62 21.0
FL* 27 5 8 - 13/ 40 14 13 - 27/ 120 40/ 160 25.0
GA 23 11 2 - 13/ 56 32 18 - 50/ 180 63/ 236 26.7
HI 17 7 0 - 7/ 25 12 3 - 15/ 51 22/ 76 28.9
ID 12 4 5 - 9/ 35 7 16 - 23/ 70 32/ 105 30.5
IL 6 13 4 - 17/ 59 34 12 - 46/ 118 63/ 177 35.6
IN* 37 2 6 - 8/ 50 11 11 - 22/ 100 30/ 150 20.0
IA* 30 5 1 - 6/ 50 19 9 - 28/ 100 34/ 150 22.7
KS 18 4 11 - 15/ 40 15 17 - 32/ 125 47/ 165 28.5
KY 42 2 2 - 4/ 38 9 10 - 19/ 100 23/ 138 16.7
LA 44 3 2 - 5/ 39 8 9 - 17/ 105 22/ 144 15.3
ME 7 6 4 - 10/ 35 35 17 1 53/ 151 63/ 186 33.9
MD 10 9 2 - 11/ 47 38 11 - 49/ 141 60/ 188 31.9
MA 25 12 0 - 12/ 40 30 8 1 39/ 160 51/ 200 25.5
MI* 27 1 3 - 4/ 38 17 16 - 33/ 110 37/ 148 25.0
MN 8 9 7 - 16/ 67 28 21 - 49/ 134 65/ 201 32.3
MS 46 4 5 - 9/ 52 10 7 - 17/ 122 26/ 174 14.9
MO 29 5 2 - 7/ 34 18 20 - 38/ 163 45/ 197 22.8
MT 19 11 2 - 13/ 50 21 8 - 29/ 100 42/ 150 28.0
NE 24 - - 13 13/ 49 - - - - - unicameral - - 13/ 49 26.5
NV 3 5 2 1 8/ 21 13 4 - 17/ 42 25/ 63 39.7
NH 15 4 3 - 7/ 24 80 39 - 119/ 400 126/ 424 29.7
NJ 16 8 2 - 10/ 40 19 6 - 25/ 80 35/ 120 29.2
NM 13 5 2 - 7/ 42 17 10 - 27/ 70 34/ 112 30.4
NY 20 7 7 - 14/ 63 41 3 1 45/ 150 59/ 213 27.7
NC 26 6 7 - 13/ 50 17 13 - 30/ 120 43/ 170 25.3
ND 41 3 6 - 9/ 47 7 10 - 17/ 94 26/ 141 18.4
OH 33 3 3 - 6/ 33 13 10 - 23/ 99 29/ 132 22.0
OK* 48 2 4 - 6/ 48 6 8 - 14/ 101 20/ 149 13.4
OR 9 6 2 - 8/ 30 19 2 - 21/ 60 29/ 90 32.2
PA 39 3 4 - 7/ 50 20 21 - 41/ 203 48/ 253 19.0
RI 11 11 1 - 12/ 38 21 2 - 23/ 75 35/ 113 31.0
SC 47 2 2 - 4/ 46 12 9 - 21/ 124 25/ 170 14.7
SD* 37 0 5 - 5/ 35 3 13 - 16/ 70 21/ 105 20.0
TN 43 2 3 - 5/ 33 7 9 - 16/ 99 21/ 132 15.9
TX 35 2 6 - 8/ 31 21 8 - 29/ 150 37/ 181 20.4
UT 36 3 3 - 6/ 29 9 6 - 15/ 75 21/ 104 20.2
VT 2 9 2 - 11/ 30 40 13 8 61/ 150 72/ 180 40.0
VA 22 7 3 - 10/ 40 23 5 - 28/ 100 38/ 140 27.1
WA 5 10 9 - 19/ 49 25 11 - 36/ 98 55/ 147 37.4
WV 48 0 3 - 3/ 34 2 13 - 15/ 100 18/ 134 13.4
WI* 28 6 2 - 8/ 33 13 9 - 22/ 99 30/ 132 22.7
WY 50 1 2 - 3/ 30   3 4 - 7/ 60    10/ 90     11.1
Totals   255 175 16 446/ 1,972 881 527 11 1,419/ 5,411 1,865/ 7,383

25.3

  * States share the same rank if their proportions of women legislators are exactly equal or round off to be equal (FL, MI; IN, SD; WI, IA; WV, OK).
**  I = other parties; in the Senate, 2 Independent, 14 non-partisans; in the House, 1 Working Families Party, 5 Progressives, 5 Independents.

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