The Slatest

There Are Already Plenty of Historic Winners in the 2022 Election

Including a 25-year-old in Florida.

Four renderings of politicians's heads.
Maxwell Alejandro Frost, Maura Healey, Kathy Hochul, and Wes Moore Photo Illustration by Slate. Reuters, Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images, Rob Kim/Getty Images for Lincoln Center & The New York Philharmonic, and Drew Angerer/Getty Images.

First Gen Z Member of Congress: Maxwell Alejandro Frost
Florida’s 10th District
Newly elected Democratic House Rep. Maxwell Alejandro Frost is just 25 years old, making the activist-turned-politician just old enough to be a member of Congress at all. He will be the first of Generation Z to join the chamber. He represents a generation that’s politically engaged and willing to push the establishment—even in bright red Florida. His victory party was broadcast on TikTok—it shows the new member of the House blasting ‘Alright’ by Kendrick Lamar.

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First Elected* Female Governor of Massachusetts and First Openly Lesbian Governor of Any State: Maura Healey
Maura Healey is breaking all kinds of records tonight. She held a consistent lead in the polls and now has decisively won, earning more than 50 percent of the vote. Healey’s Republican opponent Geoff Diehl was endorsed by Donald Trump. Meanwhile Healey has been fighting the former president for years: When she was serving as Attorney General of the state, she joined the lawsuit against the Trump Administration’s Muslim travel ban.

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First Lesbian Governor of Oregon: Tina Kotek
Progressive Democrat Tina Kotek quickly joined Massachusetts’ Maura Healey to double the number of openly lesbian governors currently in office. She came through in an incredibly competitive race, facing not one but two challengers backed by billionaire Nike co-founder Phil Knight.

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First Black Governor of Maryland: Wes Moore
Wes Moore is a veteran, best selling author, Rhodes scholar, former White House Fellow, and now the first Black man to be governor of Maryland. Oh, and he was endorsed by Oprah. The 44-year-old won the governorship after Republican Larry Hogan held the seat for eight years, and he defeated Trumped-endorsed Dan Cox—who tried to avoid the fact that the far-right neo-fascist Proud Boys had supported his candidacy.

First South Asian Lieutenant Governor of Maryland: Aruna Miller
Aruna Miller will join newly elected Maryland Governor Wes Moore as his deputy, serving as the first woman of color to be the state’s Lieutenant Governor and the first South Asian woman to serve that position in the history of American politics. Miller immigrated to the U.S. from India when she was 7 years old and went on to devote her life to public service—working 25 years with Maryland’s Department of Transportation before serving eight years in the Maryland House of Delegates..

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First Native American Senator of Oklahoma: Markwayne Mullin
Republican Markwayne Mullin is now the first Native American of the Cherokee Nation to serve as a U.S. senator in almost 100 years– the last one being Democrat Robert Owen who was elected in 1907. Mullin was serving as Oklahoma’s House Rep. and voters Tuesday night promoted him to senator with an impressive 62 percent of the vote. Mullin joins a group of only six other Native Americans currently serving in Congress.

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First Black Attorney General of Massachusetts: Andrea Campbell
Democrat Andrea Campbell has become the first Black woman to become Massachusetts’ top law enforcement officer and only the third woman to hold the job of Attorney General in the state. This isn’t Campbell’s first time breaking ceilings: In 2015 she became the first woman to represent District 4 on the Boston City Council and just a few years later in 2018 was unanimously elected City Council President—also the first Black woman to hold that title.

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First Elected Female Governor of New York: Kathy Hochul
Though she’s been serving the remainder of disgraced former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s term since last year, Democrat Kathy Hochul has won her first race against Republican Lee Zeldin. That makes her the first woman elected as governor in New York, despite having an unexpectedly tight race against Zeldin that prompted President Joe Biden to campaign with her. She managed to cinch over 50 percent of New York’s vote.

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First Muslim State Senator: Ruwa Romman
Georgia’s 97th District
Ruwa Romman ran on a progressive platform endorsed by Stacey Abram’s national voting rights group Fair Fight and she won a historic race. Romman becomes the first Muslim woman ever elected to the Georgia State House. She was born in Jordan, and moved to Georgia at 7-years-old. She’s worked at countless advocacy groups and can now add elected official to her resume.

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First Black Woman House Representative of Pennsylvania: Summer Lee
The Squad has earned another member: Democrat Summer Lee. She just won a Pittsburgh congressional seat making her the first Black woman elected to Congress from Pennsylvania. She’s a lawyer and former labor organizer endorsed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, and not new to setting records. In 2018, she was elected to Pennsylvania’s State House taking on a 20-year incumbent and winning 67 percent of the vote.

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First Black and Youngest Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania: Austin Davis
John Fetterman isn’t the only Democrat making history in Pennsylvania: 33-year-old Austin Davis has also achieved a milestone by becoming the youngest and first Black lieutenant governor that state has ever had. He became Josh Shapiro’s second in command last night and it’s not his first foray into politics—he successfully ran for Pennsylvania’s state House of Representatives in 2018, and still holds the seat today.

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First Black Woman Elected Secretary of State of California: Shirley Weber
Shirley Weber had been serving as California’s Secretary of State since last year to fill a vacancy left by Sen. Alex Padilla. On Tuesday, she became the first Black woman to be elected in California to that position. Weber is a veteran in California politics, spending 20 years in various public service roles including state Assembly Member and member and chair of the San Diego Unified School District. Her educational background is just as impressive—she earned three degrees at the University of California Los Angeles, including her Ph.D. at only 26-years-old.

We’ll keep updating this post as we get more results.

Correction, Nov. 9, 2022: This piece originally misstated that Maura Healey was the first female governor of Massachusetts. Healey was the first woman elected as governor.

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