Marcy Kaptur recently made history as the longest-sitting female in the United States House of Representatives. The House, its meetings held in the lower chamber of Washington, D.C.’s United States Congress building, has 435 members, an upper limit that’s fixed by law.
Kaptur was first elected to be one of Ohio’s 18 House Representatives in 1982, having served the state’s 9th congressional district since her first appearance in the political assembly more than 35 years ago. The district represents cities between Toledo and Cleveland, with all of Ottawa and Erie counties represented by the 9th district, and portions of Cuyahoga, Lorain, and Lucas counties making up the district, as well.
In specific chronological terms, Marcy Kaptur has, as of Monday, March 19, 2018, served 35 years, two months, and 15 days.
The History Of Kaptur’s Reign Over Ohio’s 9th
Capitol Hill welcomed the 36-year-old Kaptur back in 1983, when former Speaker “Tip” O’Neill, a Democrat from Massachusetts, officially swore her in. This was during the Ronald Reagan era, when Democrats made up the majority of the House of Representative’s 435 seats.
To this day, Ms. Kaptur proudly maintains a neatly-kept, silver-framed photograph of the swearing-in ceremony, featuring the aforementioned then-Speaker O’Neill on its right, with the remainder of House Representatives providing a universal applause, all standing in unison.
The picture represents a time in which most members of both the Senate and the House of Representatives were white males. Today, at least the majority of the House Democratic Caucus side of the House is made up of either females, minorities, or female minorities.
Fast Forward To Today’s Political Atmosphere
Today, political candidacies are much more wide open, with more women running for spots across both the Senate and House of Representatives than ever before.
Still, Kaptur shares, federal politics are “like you run into this big marshmallow, this mammoth marshmallow, and it kind of absorbs you, and it’s so hard to work your way through in order to get passage to do something different for the country.”