Progressive Women Won Big in New Mexico

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On the National level, women made fewer gains than expected in the new Congress, though there are some great stories – including big gains for women of color in the US Senate.


That’s good news, but not nearly far enough to be equal. In Washington, women make up a meager 20% of members in the House and Senate, combined. With both the House and the Senate in Republican control, the issues and concerns of women are on the table.

Here at home, organizations like Emerge NM have been recruiting and training women to run for office to make up the difference.  This year, they had 30 graduates on ballots across the state.

Their efforts, bolstered by supporters like you helped win back the State House, which will be led by a Democratic majority that includes the largest progressive caucus in history and women added to their gains in both houses of the state legislature and one of our few statewide offices.

None of the changes would be possible without those who voted. We fought hard to bring you the facts on each candidate, and to inform our communities what we were up against. You met the challenge by getting out and voting.  We are particularly proud of the women we championed in the races that meant the most to us and the community. Here’s to the women who ran and WON.

Maggie Toulouse Oliver will soon be our Secretary of State

11Maggie Oliver’s progressive credentials are unparalleled. She ran a clean campaign against her opponent, and her honest leadership is what we can all count on as our new Secretary of State.


Liz Thomson State House District 24

31Liz Thomson is a survivor. She beat breast cancer and the Republican PAC. Last night, Liza Thomson won her district by 564 votes. She garnered 52.36% of the vote, and will continue the work of advocating for women and families.  Mother of a child with a disability, Liz became a champion for other mothers while serving in the State Legislature.


Joanne Ferrary – State House District 37

61Doña Ana County, progressives won BIG. Among the big winners was three-time candidate Joanne Ferrary. The new representative of District 37 in the New Mexico House of Representatives won by 702 votes, ousting conservative State Rep. Terry McMillan by securing 52.48% of the vote. Her passion for traffic safety issues led her to work for the New Mexico Department of Transportation, and today, as a result of Joanne’s and others efforts, less than half as many people die in DWI crashes as they did 20 years ago.

State Senator Liz Stefanics – State Senate District 39

progressive-champion-4The final results have not been tabulated, but it appears that Liz Stefanics has ousted the governor’s Republican appointee in Senate District 39 by garnering 50.87% of the vote. Stefanics serves on the Santa Fe County Commission. A former member of the New Mexico Senate, she was the first openly LGBT member of the New Mexico legislature, serving a single four-year term that began in January 1993. Stefanics has long been a champion of progressive principles, particularly in her role fighting for equality for women and the LGBTQ community.


ProgressNow NM congratulates these winners and all the progressives who won their races yesterday. These cheers for our progressive future.

Read more of our post-election analysis