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More State Democrats to Know in 2018

Press Releases


March 14, 2018
Mara Sloan
DLCC Communications Director
[email protected]
More State Democrats to Know in 2018
November elections present Democrats with opportunities to win nationwide

WASHINGTON — Since the 2016 election, the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee’s (DLCC) expertise and fifty-state strategy have produced monumental wins nationwide, including flipping 39 legislative seats and an entire chamber from Republican to Democratic control.

Today, DLCC Executive Director Jessica Post announced the committee is highlighting several more critical 2018 midterm races on its Spotlight Races page. This group of November candidates includes Democrats who are running in battleground states crucial to redistricting like Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio, Texas, and more. 

“While 2017 was an exciting and record-setting year, the DLCC looks forward to setting new high watermarks in 2018 as Democratic momentum and enthusiasm for our level of the ballot continues to build,” said Post. “Since President Trump was elected, the DLCC and state Democrats have flipped 39 seats from red to blue, flipped an entire chamber to Democratic control, and continue to elect strong candidates from all over the country. Our Spotlight Races page has brought national attention to Democrats running in critical state races nationwide.

“We are proud to stand with these dedicated Democratic candidates who will be on the ballot in November, and with all of our candidates who have stepped up to run and make a difference in their communities as we work to bring back the values Democrats fight for every day to our state legislatures – from standing up for working families, to making health care affordable and accessible, to protecting human rights and fighting for equality, to investing in the next generation through strengthening our public education in America. The DLCC is fired up and ready to win more seats throughout the year and in November.”

State Democrats to know:
  • Representative Park Cannon, Georgia HD-58: At just 26-years-old, Rep. Cannon is making history both on and off the House floor. She is Georgia’s youngest state representative and only its third LGBTQ-identifying member, and has cosponsored important legislation focused on expanding access to quality education, ending discrimination, and ensuring pay equity.
  • Representative Sam Park, Georgia HD-101: In November of 2016, Rep. Park made history as the first openly gay man to be elected to the Georgia state legislature, and he’s currently the only Asian-American serving in that chamber. A child of immigrants and raised by a single mother, he has focused his legislative career on protecting those at risk.
  • Kristin Sunde, Iowa HD-42: Kristin is a first-time candidate whose experience as a small business owner and foster parent gives her a unique perspective and a fresh take on the problems facing Iowans. She is running against a five-term GOP incumbent to be a new voice for working families.
  • Representative Ryan Fecteau, Maine HD-11: Upon his election to the Maine House in 2014, Rep. Fecteau became the youngest openly gay representative in the country. Now he is running for re-election to continue his work tackling problems like student loan debt and Maine’s opioid crisis, and fighting for the rights of workers and LGBTQ Mainers.
  • Representative Jeremy Moss, Michigan SD-11: A dedicated public servant, prior to Rep. Moss’s election to the state House in 2014, he was the youngest member ever elected to his City Council. Now he is running for the Michigan Senate to continue his record of fighting for increased government transparency, civil rights, and non-partisan redistricting. If elected, he would be the only openly LGBTQ member of the Michigan Senate.
  • Padma Kuppa, Michigan HD-46: A longtime community organizer in the Troy and greater-Detroit area, Padma will bring what she’s learned while serving in local government to the Michigan House. Padma is a first-generation Indian immigrant who will fight for quality education and work to pass policies that protect and benefit all Michiganders.
  • Representative Jon Hoadley, Michigan HD-60: Rep. Hoadley is running for re-election to the Michigan House so he can continue to serve his constituents and pass legislation advancing LGBTQ equality, gun safety measures, and fair redistricting.
  • Rachel Hood, Michigan HD-76: A long-time resident of western Michigan, Rachel is a first-time candidate running to give back to the community she loves. She will use her expertise in sustainable and clean energy technology advocacy and her experience helping local municipalities and institutions secure funding for projects to move the Wolverine State forward.
  • Cathleen Fountain, New Hampshire HD Coos-07: Cathleen has long served her community, from her time in the United States Navy to her work in community organizations and her involvement in local government. A proponent of voting rights and affordable and accessible health care, Cathleen will be a fierce advocate for her constituents in the New Hampshire House.
  • Mark Vallone, New Hampshire HD Rockingham-09: For over two decades, Mark served his state as a teacher and an elementary school principal, committing his life to expanding opportunity for all young Granite Staters. Now he is running for the state House to fight for New Hampshire’s most vulnerable citizens and to continue serving his community.
  • Nathan Dowds, Ohio SD-03: U.S. Army veteran and paratrooper Nathan Dowds has never hesitated to answer the call for service. After three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, Nathan is a first-time candidate running to continue his service to his country and community as a member of the Ohio Senate.
  • Jamie Ballinger, Tennessee SD-07: In a state where just 15% of current state Senators are women, lawyer and first-time candidate Jamie Ballinger is running to increase representation in the chamber and offer a much-needed perspective. Jamie will be a fierce ally for women and working families, fighting for policies like equal pay, affordable childcare, and access to quality health care.
  • Representative Mary Gonzalez, Texas HD-75: Rep. Gonzalez became the first openly pansexual lawmaker in the Texas state legislature when she was elected in 2012. She has earned a strong record for defending Texas workers, fighting for students, and passing legislation that benefits all Texans.
  • John Doyle, West Virginia HD-67: After previously serving more than 20 years in the West Virginia House of Delegates, Vietnam War veteran, Bronze Star recipient, and former state Delegate John Doyle was inspired to run again after witnessing how the state has suffered under Republican control.
The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee is the only organization exclusively committed to electing Democrats to state legislatures all over the country and winning Democratic control of chambers. For over two decades, the DLCC has been working with state legislative leaders to invest strategically in state programs, which has led to Democrats flipping 39 seats since Trump’s inauguration. The DLCC is building on Democrats’ winning momentum and continues to lay the groundwork for substantial gains in 2018 in statehouses nationwide. State Democrats recently scored critical victories in ConnecticutNew HampshireKentuckyFlorida, MinnesotaMissouri, Washington, Virginia, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, FloridaGeorgia, and elsewhere, while also leading the resistance against the Trump administration’s extremist policies. You can learn more about critical upcoming elections and follow DLCC’s Spotlight Races at
For more information or to schedule an interview with the DLCC, please contact Mara Sloan at [email protected].
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