First Native American women in Congress
Democrats Sharice Davids of Kansas and Debra Haaland of New Mexico are not only the first Native American women elected to Congress but they are also the first indigenous people seated in Congress.
Davids, 38, is an attorney by training and a former mixed martial arts fighter. She is also openly lesbian, in a state that is traditionally conservative.
Haaland, 57, is a member of the Pueblo of Laguna tribe and a wellknown community activist in her solidly Democratic district, working tirelessly
t to encour- age Native Americans – who make up twot percent of the US population n – to vote. She cut her teeth wor rking as a volunteer for John Kerr ry’s presidential campaign in 2004 4.
“WeW need real people who are talking about our issues and know what it feels like,” Haaland had said ahead of the elections. “We have people in Congress right now who... don’t know what it’s like to be without food or proper health care.”