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Election of First Black Woman Lt. Governor Expected in 2002

The expected Republican and Democratic nominees in the Ohio gubernatorial race have both picked black women to run as lieutenant governor on their respective tickets. Jeanette B. Bradley will run on the Republican ticket and Charleta B. Tavares on the Democratic ticket. Both women are councilwomen in Columbus, Ohio. A black woman has never been elected lieutenant governor in any state in the U.S., but Ohio voters will almost positively change that this year.

Currently, according to the Center for American Women in Politics, part of the Eagleton Institute for Politics at Rutgers University, of the 88 women serving in statewide elective executive offices, only 1 is African-American, Denise Nappier, State Treasurer of Connecticut. African-American women fare little better in other offices. There are only 14 African-American women who serve in the 107th U.S. Congress, and 118 African-American women currently holding seats in state legislatures.

Sources:

New York Times, 2/24/02; Center for American Women in Politics, Eagleton Institute for Politics, Rutgers University

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