Young Officials Gain Ground in 2019 Election Cycle
December 2, 2019
2019 was a strong year for Millennials running for office. Earlier in November four states held elections for their state legislatures. Three of the states — Virginia, Louisiana, and Mississippi — held elections for both their house and senate, while in the fourth state, New Jersey, only the General Assembly was on the ballot. Overall, the results were strongly encouraging for Millennial involvement in state politics.
As a whole, 46 young officials were elected across all four states. Incumbents made up a large chunk of those who were elected with 33 legislators returning to their statehouses. Virginia delivered the highest percentage of elected Millennials out of the four states, sending 20 lawmakers to Richmond. Within Virginia, only two out of the overall 20 were newly elected, but the fact that Millennials now hold almost 20% of the House of Delegates shows the strength that Millennials already had in the state.
While Virginia elected the largest number of Millennials, other states made a splash with an increase in the number of new Millennial lawmakers that won races. Mississippi and Louisiana combined to elect 10 new Millennial lawmakers, three in MS and seven in LA. The 10 newly elected officials made up 50% of Millennial lawmakers elected between the two states. Also, in New Jersey, seven Millennials won their races for the General Assembly, six incumbents and one new official. While New Jersey had the lowest number of Millennials elected in 2019, much of this can be attributed to the fact that the state Senate was not on the ballot. It is still worth noting that after their elections, Millennials now make up almost 9% of New Jersey’s General Assembly, compared to just 6% in the U.S. House of Representatives.
*These numbers include elected officials ages 41 and under
By Harrison Frye, Intern
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