10 inspiring women candidates hope to turn Michigan's House blue


Michigan Democrats need to flip nine seats to turn the House blue — and they're running women candidates in 10 of the state's 13 most competitive districts.

Mari Manoogian could be one of a record-setting number of women headed to the Michigan state legislature after this midterm election.

Manoogian, a former State Department employee and descendant of refugees, is running a campaign focused on education and infrastructure. She's running for an open seat in a traditionally conservative area, facing off against a Trump-supporting Republican.

Manoogian, endorsed by Emily's List, Hillary Clinton, and many others, is one of 10 women Democrats nominated in 13 competitive seats across the state in a bid to retake control of the Michigan House of Representatives.

"Folks on our side are engaged and excited," Rep. Kevin Hertel of St. Clair Shores, co-campaign chairman for House Democrats, told the Detroit News. "We just need to do our job to make sure folks are turning out to vote. If we do that, we have a really good shot at taking back control of the state House."

Groups like Fems for Dems have sprung up across Michigan to help propel strong Democratic women to elected office.

And up-and-coming political stars like Manoogian are helped by two powerful women at the top of the ticket in Michigan: Gretchen Whitmer, who is running for governor, and Sen. Debbie Stabenow, who is seeking another term.

These already-strong nominees have an even better chance given the deep unpopularity of Trump, who is dragging down Republican nominees across the state.

Backlash against Trump "is what’s driving voters in every single race right now," said Richard Czuba, who conducted a recent poll showing barely one in three Michiganders support Trump.

Trump's toxic drag on the Republican Party, combined with such a high number of quality Democratic candidates, could turn Michigan's state House of Representatives blue for the first time in almost a decade.