The 2018 Midterm Elections, by the Numbers

These numbers prove that the enthusiasm around female candidates is very real. You've probably heard that more women than ever before are running for Congress, but records are being set at the state level. That’s just one of many milestones to come out of this race.

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Call it the year of the woman or the pink wave—either way, the 2018 midterm elections (opens in new tab) have garnered far more attention and excitement than the ho-hum, low voter turnout contests of years past. There are an historic number of women (opens in new tab) running for office, campaign spending is on pace to make this the most expensive midterms ever (opens in new tab), and a record-setting 800,000 people signed up to vote on National Voter Registration Day earlier this month (thank you, Taylor Swift! (opens in new tab)).

With just hours to go until the polls close, voters are already reporting long lines (opens in new tab), and nonprofits like Pizza to the Polls (opens in new tab) have sprung into action to make sure that everybody waiting is well-fed. There's a lot at stake during this election—from the health of Roe v. Wade and how things will shake out if it's overturned, to the legislation seeking to kill an anti-discrimination law and leave trans people in danger (opens in new tab) in public spaces. Long before polling places opened, celebrities and other public figures were already speaking out about who they were endorsing (opens in new tab) and urging others to vote—after all, today marks the first real electoral test of the strength of the "resistance."

And yet. With a dizzying amount of midterms coverage making the rounds on TV and social media every day, it can be hard to make sense of it all, even for the most impassioned of us. We hear you, and that’s why we’ve prepared this list of straight facts and figures on the key takeaways from the campaign season.

These numbers prove that the enthusiasm around female candidates is very real—you’ve probably heard that more women than ever before are running for Congress, but records are being set at the state level, too, where 3,379 women are running for seats in their state legislatures (that’s an increase of more than 700 women from 2016) and a history-making 16 women have been nominated for governor.

That’s just one of many milestones to come out of this race. Like...

529 vs. 312

Number of women running for Congress in 2018 (opens in new tab) vs. 2016 (opens in new tab).

235 vs. 167

Number of female nominees for the U.S. House in 2018 vs. in 2016 (opens in new tab) (the previous record).

22 vs. 18

Number of female nominees for the U.S. Senate in 2018 vs. 2012  (opens in new tab)(the previous record).

476 vs. 298

Number of women who filed to run for the U.S. House in 2018 vs. 2012 (opens in new tab) (the previous record).

53 vs. 40

Number of women who filed to run for the U.S. Senate in 2018 vs. 2016 (opens in new tab) (the previous record).

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(Image credit: Getty Images)

61 vs. 34

Number of women who filed to run for governor in 2018 vs. 1994 (opens in new tab) (the previous record).

44 percent

Increase in female Congressional candidates since 2012 (opens in new tab).

75 percent

Increase in women of color candidates for Congress since 2012 (opens in new tab).

13 percent

Decrease in white male candidates for Congress since 2012 (opens in new tab).

44 percent vs. 76 percent

The portion of white men who make up Democratic candidates for state legislature vs. the portion of white men who make up Republican candidates for state legislature.

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71 percent

Increase in women of color candidates for state legislatures since 2012.

102

Number of women running for governor, U.S. House, or U.S. Senate who are first-time candidates (opens in new tab).

42,000 vs. 920

Number of women who contacted EMILY’s List, (opens in new tab) an organization that helps pro-choice Democratic women run for office, to express interest in running for office since the 2016 election vs. the previous record number of women who contact the group during the entire 2016 election cycle.

22

Number of female nominees for U.S. Senate (opens in new tab), a record. Of those, 15 are Democrats and 7 are Republicans.

235

Number of female nominees for U.S. Congress, (opens in new tab) a record. Of those, 183 are Democrats and 52 are Republicans.

32.4 percent

Portion of all major-party nominees for U.S. Senate that are women. (opens in new tab)

28.7 percent

Portion of all major-party nominees for U.S. House that are women (opens in new tab).

50 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who are challenging incumbents (opens in new tab).

34 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who are women of color. (opens in new tab)

17.4 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who identify as black (opens in new tab).

8.1 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who identify as Latina. (opens in new tab)

6.8 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who identify as Asian/Pacific Islander. (opens in new tab)

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0.9 percent

Portion of female nominees for the U.S. House who identify as Native American (opens in new tab)

1

.

Number of female nominees for the U.S. Senate who are women of color (opens in new tab).

244

Number of openly LGBTQ candidates who will appear on general election ballots (opens in new tab).

21

Number of openly LGBTQ candidates (opens in new tab) who won Democratic primaries for U.S. Senate or House; there are zero known LGBTQ Republican nominees for U.S. Congress for the first time since 2010.

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4

Number of LBGTQ nominees for governor, (opens in new tab) a record.

35

The number of seats up for election in the U.S. Senate in 2018 (opens in new tab).

26 vs. 9

Number of Democratic-held seats in the U.S. Senate that are up for election in 2018 vs. the number of Republican-held seats in the U.S. Senate that are up for election in 2018  (opens in new tab).

10

Number of U.S. Senate held by Democrats in states President Donald Trump won in 2016 that are up for election in 2018. (opens in new tab)

2

Number of seats Democrats need (opens in new tab) to net to take control of the U.S. Senate (while holding on to the 49 seats they currently have).

435

The number of seats up for election in the U.S. House in 2018 (opens in new tab).

23

Number of Republican-held seats Democrats need to win to take control of the U.S. House (opens in new tab).

68

Number of U.S. House districts that are considered competitive (opens in new tab).

16 percent

Portion of Americans living in one of the U.S. House districts that are considered competitive (opens in new tab).

11

Number of states without a woman currently serving in Congress (opens in new tab). (Pennsylvania and South Carolina are on track to elect a woman this year.)

16

Number of female nominees for governor, (opens in new tab) a record. (Of those, 12 are Democrats and 4 are Republican.)

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3,379

Number of female nominees for state legislative offices (opens in new tab), a record (up from 2,649 in 2016).

$624.7 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by all Democrats running for the U.S. House.

$471.6 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by all Republicans running for the U.S. House.

$368.6 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by all Democrats running for the U.S. Senate.

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$233.9 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by all Republicans running for the U.S. Senate.

$24.8 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by incumbent Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican, and his Democratic challenger, Beto O’Rourke, in the race for the U.S. Senate in Texas. The contest is the most expensive race this election cycle.

$55.7 million

Amount contributed (opens in new tab) by Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino magnate, and his wife, Miriam. The Adelsons are the biggest spenders of the midterms, and 100 percent of their donations went to Republicans.

$42.2 million

Amount contributed (opens in new tab) by Tom Steyer, the hedge fund manager turned environmentalist, and his wife, Kathryn Fahr. Steyer and Fahr are the largest Democratic donors this cycle.

32.3 percent vs. 12.9 percent

Portion of money raised (opens in new tab) by Senate Republican candidates that came from political action committees (or PACs) vs. the portion of money raised by Senate Democratic candidates that came from PACs.

$2.47 million vs. $1.82 million

Amount spent (opens in new tab) by gun rights groups vs. the amount spent by gun control groups.

$368 million

Amount contributed (opens in new tab) by residents of California alone; Californians gave more money to campaigns than any other state.

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(Image credit: Design by Morgan McMullen)

33

Number of women vs. women races (opens in new tab) in the general election.

45 percent

Portion of women running for the U.S. House or Senate who won their primaries (opens in new tab) (41 winners out of 92 female candidates).

29

Age of the youngest member of the U.S. House of Representatives if Abby Finkenauer wins (opens in new tab) her race for Iowa’s First Congressional District.

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(Image credit: Morgan McMullen)

From explainers to essays, cheat sheets to candidate analysis, we're breaking down exactly what you need to know about this year's midterms. Visit Marie Claire's Midterms Guide  (opens in new tab)for more.

Kayla Webley Adler is the Deputy Editor of ELLE magazine. She edits cover stories, profiles, and narrative features on politics, culture, crime, and social trends. Previously, she worked as the Features Director at Marie Claire magazine and as a Staff Writer at TIME magazine.