News and Commentary

New Republican Congresswomen: GOP Has ‘Finally Come Around,’ Preparing To Fight And Win In Future
Nancy Mace Nicole Malliotakis
Getty Images: Michael Ciaglo / Drew Angerer

Two of the Republican Party’s newest members of the House of Representatives joined CNN on Sunday to discuss the direction of the party and what changes the party made to get more women elected.

Reps. Nancy Mace (SC) and Nicole Malliotakis (NY) appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” with fill-in host Dana Bash where they talked about the recent elections.

When asked why more Republican women were elected this year, Mace said, “Well, we had more women running this year. And it was an exciting time.”

“We saw in 2018 a record number of Democrat women run and win. And if women want to have a seat at the table, then we have got to raise our hand and say, we are going to step into the arena, risk it all, and we are going to run. And we have to have more women run to win,” she continued. “And, in fact, 26 of the 27 toss-up races here this year were won by women, minorities, combat vets. And, in my case, I was in a lean-Democrat seat that we took back this year. And it’s just an exciting time to be part of history, with all these great hardworking women.”

Malliotakis, whose parents are immigrants, was asked about the gains that the GOP made and the future of the party, which some in the party had started to worry about.

“Well, look, this is what I have always known about the GOP, that we are a big tent party, that we do have people that come from different places from around the world,” Malliotakis said. “We do incorporate women. And now we’re seeing women having a seat at the table, which is tremendous. When you look back in our nation’s history, the first female member of Congress was a Republican woman, Jeannette Rankin in 1917. And we have come such a long way from then.”

“I think it’s upon people like Nancy and I to now pay it forward, to recruit other women. One of the reasons why you saw so many women take office on the Republican side was because of the efforts of Leader Kevin McCarthy, because of people like Elise Stefanik, Liz Cheney, Steve Scalise, who went out there and recruited qualified women who have something to share with the American people and who have the experience and the background to be productive participants in the legislative process,” Malliotakis continued. “And I think one of the reasons why we were so motivated to run is seeing the Democratic women being elected in 2018 that don’t necessarily reflect our values, particularly those who are self- described socialists. Somebody like me, the daughter of a Cuban refugee, I want to be there to be a part of the discussion and the debate and provide a counterview.”

Mace later added that she thinks that the Republican Party needs to get better at communicating its message to the public.


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