By Christian Peña
MANCHESTER, N.H. — Donna Soucy, New Hampshire Senate president, is among the many women who are breaking barriers in state politics.
Soucy is a Democratic family, once serving with her father and mother. Soucy previously served in the New Hampshire House of Representatives and as a ManchesterAlderman. She served three terms in the House right after college, she said, when there were approximately 140 Democrats out of 400 in the statehouse.
While a Republican-led government was a challenge, Soucy takes pride in being a part of the change that helped Democrats win New Hampshire and break barriers for women in politics. “We have really challenged to see New Hampshire evolve into a more purple [state] and I think ultimately will be a blue state,” Soucy said.
In 2009, New Hampshire became the first state to have a female majority in its senate, and today 14 of the 10 women are Democrats, she said. Out of the 400 state representatives in the House, 233 of them are Democrats.
“New Hampshire has a great track record of electing women to higher office,” Soucy said. New Hampshire currently has Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan representing them in the United States Senate.
According to the Center for Women and American Politics, Shaheen became the first woman in the United States to serve both as governor and U.S., senator. Hassan was a former -state senator before becoming a U.S. senator. New Hampshire is also the first and only state to send an all-female, all-Democratic delegation to Congress.
Soucy said female power can be seen on a national level, too. “Electability – I don’t think it’s much of a gender issue,” she said. While some voters have identified and supported a male candidate, Hillary Clinton won the electoral votes in 2016 and another woman for president can do it again, she said.
She said she wants to create change and reach out to all possible voters. “I want to make sure that we’re making things available in the best possible setting and in the best possible way for people,” she said.
Would one day seek a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives? “I feel like I can have the most impact here at home,” she said.