10 Women to Watch in Politics: Mia Love, Rep. McMorris Rodgers, and Tulsi Gabbard

Today, The Daily Beast columnist Patricia Murphy ranked  WUFPAC candidates (#1 Mia Love and #7 Tulsi Gabbard) and one alumna member (#4 Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers) as “10 Women to Watch in Politics.”

Full article can be found here, excerpt below on the WUFPAC candidate and alumna:

1. Mia Love: If the name is new to you, it won’t be for long. Love is fast becoming the breakout star of the GOP’s 2012 recruiting class as she makes a run for Utah’s newly created Fourth District.

It’s fitting that a newly drawn district would attract this particular candidate, who is a one-of-a-kind herself. The African-American Mormon is the mayor of Saratoga Springs, the Utah boomtown that claims an AAA bond rating, and is also a mom of three and a take-no-prisoners fitness instructor in her spare time. Those who know this daughter of Haitian immigrants say she’s even more than the sum of her parts, calling her “tenacious,” “dynamic,” and “a superstar.”

The pro-life gun owner recently surprised the Utah old guard when she sailed through the Republican convention on the first ballot, an accomplishment that even longtime senator Orrin Hatch couldn’t manage, and has been tapped as one of the National Republican Campaign Committee’s “Young Guns.” According to the NRCC’s Andrea Bozek, “It’s a signal to our community that this is a candidate you should be watching.”

4. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.): McMorris Rodgers has broken plenty of barriers during her in eight years in the House, but none more challenging than becoming the only woman in the House Republican leadership while also being the only member of Congress to give birth in office—twice.

The conservative multi-tasker from Washington State has also become the face of the GOP’s efforts to shoot down the “war on women” narrative that has taken root in this election cycle. It’s not always an easy job for the woman known as a steady hand in a Capitol full of blowhards, but the Mitt Romney campaign recently took notice of her efforts and named her as Romney’s top surrogate in the House.

“I think she is a powerhouse,” says Katie Vlietstra, President of the Women Under 40 PAC that endorsed the congresswoman in her first race. “A lot of people counted her out in an unfair way when her son was born, and she just put her head down and proved them wrong.”

McMorris Rogers’s son was born with Down syndrome. When she returned from maternity leave, the congresswoman promptly launched the Down Syndrome Caucus to educate her fellow members of Congress about the condition.

7.  Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii):  “High achiever” seems like faint praise for the dynamic Gabbard, who kicked off her public-service career as the youngest woman ever elected to a state legislature, at 21, and never looked back. Just two years into her term, Gabbard resigned to deploy to Iraq as a member of the Hawaii National Guard. Following a second tour in Kuwait and a stint as a Senate staffer for Hawaii’s Sen. Daniel Akaka in Washington, Gabbard went home to run for—and win—a seat on the Honolulu City Council, where she now serves.

“Forceful,” “brave,” and “down to earth” are a few of the adjectives people use to describe Gabbard, who will need all of those attributes and more in her congressional race against the mayor of Honolulu for Hawaii’s open House seat.  At the ripe age of 31, supporters say, the Samoan-born, home-schooled Gabbard is ready for the challenge.

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