Read below for a brief update of our work regarding toward center-right Republican women to Federal office.
Republican women are making headway, but still lag behind Democratic women. As of June 28, 468 women have run for a House seat but only 118 were Republicans, 153 women have made it through the primaries, but only 34 were Republicans (17 Republicans are incumbents), and a record share (22%) of Senate candidates are women.
The number of Democratic female House candidates has risen by 146% while the number of Republican female candidates has only increased by 35% (Eyeing the Midterms, Some Republican Women Are Taking On The ‘Aging, White’ GOP. Additionally, 70% of millenial women now affiliate with the Democrats or lean Democratic.
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What’s Next for Ashley Nickloes…
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She started late. She spent less. She came in third with better than 10 percent of the vote. Not bad for a first-time candidate for Congress. So what’s next for Ashley Nickloes, the Air National Guard pilot and mother of four who attracted national attention in her run for the Republican nomination for East Tennessee’s 2nd District seat? Maybe deployment. Maybe another run for office. But first, a weekend trip to the lake with the family.
“For two and a half months (of campaigning) against guys who’ve been doing this for years, I think we did pretty damn well,” Nickloes said Thursday night after a celebration with supporters at the Casual Pint in Farragut. “It wasn’t me. I had an incredible team. Now I’m just looking forward to being a mom and a wife for the next four days, and we’ll see what happens next.”
Nickloes works as an exercise planner for the National Guard Bureau and has served 19 years in the Air National Guard, where she holds the rank of lieutenant colonel and flies a KC-135 refueling plane. She said she got the idea to run partly from frustration when congressional dithering over the budget left her unable to hire for an open job in her unit.
That military career held up the kickoff for her campaign until she came home from her eighth tour of duty this spring. But she made up for lost time, raising $158,329.89 in campaign funds (and spending $121,891.17) and drawing profiles in the Wall Street Journal, Roll Call and the Washington Post.
Winner Tim Burchett spent $456.399.47 by comparison, and second-place finisher Jimmy Matlock spent $667,797.88. Even Jason Emert, who came in fourth behind Nickloes, spent more — $352,272.13.
“Who else is able to be interviewed by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists their first time out?” Nickloes said. “If we’d had another month or so, I think this election would be a different story.”
She believes voters in the 2nd District — which covers Knox, Blount, Loudon, Grainger, and Claiborne counties, along with parts of Campbell and Jefferson counties — warmed to her campaign as the race between the GOP front-runners, Knox County Mayor Burchett and state Rep. Matlock of Lenoir City, turned ugly.
“I noticed when people were coming to the polls, they kept saying, ‘Thank you for staying positive,'” Nickloes said. “In that way, I think we won, although the vote count might not show it.”
Matlock’s campaign manager, Greg Butcher, wouldn’t speculate about whether tactics such as attack ads against Burchett might have hurt Matlock at the polls.
“All kinds of factors go into these results, and you can’t point to any one as the single cause,” he said.
Nickloes said she expects to find out in coming weeks when and where she’ll be serving her next deployment. That timing could decide whether she runs for public office again.
“Right now I’m going to take a breather,” Nickloes said. “But if I run again, we’ll run the same way — just with more time.”
Current US Rep Elise Stefanik (NY-21) leads charge for recruiting Republican women candidates facing competitive general election. As House Recruitment Chair, Stefanik is strategically vital to getting more Republican women in office. Stefanik’s seat is one of 48 that the Democrats have deemed competitive, needing only 24 to flip the house. Support Stefanik to keep a center-right champion in over a Democrat, Tedra Cobb, a champion of government-run healthcare. See her bio and click here to help get her elected.
AZ Senate candidate Martha McSally leads the polls with a 14 point lead over fellow Republican candidates. “McSally is seen as a more moderate alternative to her hard-line Republican opponents” (Poll: McSally Leads by Double Digits in Arizona Senate Primary). Her Republican opponents are Joe Arpaio and Bannon candidate, Kelli Ward. WomenRUN played a part in McSally’s lead with our May 14th fundraising lunch that exceeded her campaign’s expectations. Click here to learn more about McSally and here to support her.