By Ellen McGirt
Updated: November 7, 2018 12:55 PM ET

If you believe the data that suggests diverse organizations and teams are smarter, make better decisions, are more fiscally successful and bring more innovative products to market, than the prospects for better political governance in the U.S. look brighter today.

While there were plenty of highs and lows on a busy election night, the overall result is a growing field of representatives who, in some important ways, better reflect the faces and feelings of the American population.

Here’s a quick list:

  • Guam has elected its first female governor, it’s first openly gay lieutenant governor, and has a new women-led legislature.
  • Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia are Texas’ first Latinas elected to Congress, and the first women elected to a full term in Congress in more than 20 years. New York’s Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the youngest woman ever in Congress. New Mexico’s Michelle Luján Grisham became the first-ever Democratic Latina Governor.
  • Speaking of New Mexico, the state is poised to have the first U.S. House delegation comprised entirely of people of color.
  • Kansas voters elected Sharice David, the first openly gay person to represent the state, and now one of two Native American women ever elected to Congress. (The second is New Mexico’s Debra Haaland.)
  • Michigan’s Rashida Tlaib and Minnesota’s Ilhan Omar will become the first Muslim women in Congress. Omar is also the first Somali-American House member and a former refugee.
  • Colorado’s Jared Polis will become the country’s first openly elected gay governor .
  • Ayanna Pressley will become the first black woman to represent Massachusetts in Congress. Jahana Hayes, a former national teacher of the year, became the first black woman elected to the Congress in Connecticut. At 31, Lauren Underwood was the youngest black woman running for Congress this year. The former public health nurse won her Chicago race in a white, conservative district.
  • Antonio Delgado, a Harvard School graduate and Rhodes Scholar who had been called “a former big-city rapper” like it was an accusation, appears to have won his bid for New York’s 19th Congressional district.
  • As New York’s next attorney general, Letitia James became the first woman in the role, the first black person in the role and, get this, the first black woman to be elected to statewide office in New York.
  • Oh, and Massachusetts voters opted to keep protections for transgender and non-binary people in place, Florida eliminated the lifetime voting ban for some convicted felons, and Nebraska and Idaho voters chose to expand Medicaid coverage for low-income residents.

I’m barely scratching the surface.

I know that fans of Texas’ Beto O’Rourke or Florida’s Andrew Gillum were disappointed in last night’s results, and it looks like two races in Georgia will drag on for awhile: Both House candidate Lucy McBath, who lost her son to gun violence, and gubernatorial hopeful Stacey Abrams are still crunching the numbers.

In Abrams case, it’s a little more than crunching, of course.

But now that the midterms are over, it will soon be time for these elected officials to get to work. That’s a whole different ball game, isn’t it? Perhaps it’s time to sponsor a GoFundMe account to send bias-mitigation trainers to Capitol Hill and beyond, to make sure everyone’s on the same page.

You know what they say—diversity is being invited to the party, but inclusion is being asked to dance.

Cha, cha, cha.


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