Primary Outlook: Women Candidates in Delaware

September 7, 2018

Ahead of the Delaware primary election on September 6, 2018, we outline the numbers and proportions of women who have filed as candidates for congressional and statewide office. The data below also provide points of historical comparison to give context to today’s presence and potential success of women candidates.

All data are provided from the Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University. For a full list of the women candidates in Delaware primary races for congressional and statewide offices, see CAWP’s Election Watch page.


Current: 1 (1D) of 3 members of the Delaware congressional delegation (33.3%)
Filed: 2 (2D)
Percent of all Filed Congressional Candidates (D/R): 25% (2 of 8)


Current: 0 of 2 senators

  • No woman has ever served in the U.S. Senate from Delaware. 

Filed: 1 (1D)

  • Kerri Harris is challenging incumbent Senator Tom Carper in the Democratic primary. She is the only primary challenger to Carper in 2018.
  • If successful, Kerri Harris would be the only Black woman nominee for the U.S. Senate selected in 2018.

Percent of all Filed Senate Candidates (D/R): 20% (1 of 5)
Percent of all Filed Democratic Senate Candidates:  50% (1 of 2)
Percent of all Filed Republican Senate Candidates: 0% (0 of 3)


Current: 1 of 1 representative (100%)

  • Incumbent Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester (D) is running unopposed for re-election this year to Delaware’s at-large U.S. House seat. She is the first and only woman to represent Delaware in Congress.
  • Representative Rochester is the only woman who filed to run for Delaware’s U.S. House seat this year.
  • Representative Rochester is currently one of 18 Black women serving in the U.S. House.

Districts with Women Candidates:  1 of 1
Percent of all Filed House Candidates (D/R):  33.3% (1 of 3)
Percent of all Filed Democratic House Candidates: 100% (1 of 1)
Percent of all Filed Republican House Candidates: 0% (0 of 2)

Recent history: The number of women who filed for major party candidacy for the U.S. House in Delaware in 2018 is not a record high. In 2010, 2 women filed for Delaware’s at-large House seat.


Current: 1 (1D) of 6 positions (16.7%)

  • Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long (D) is not up for election this year. She will retain her position in 2019.

Just 3 of Delaware’s 6 statewide elected executive offices are up for election in 2018: attorney general, auditor, and treasurer.

Filed:  5 (5D)

  • 2 (2D) women – Kathleen Davies and Kathleen McGuiness – are competing for the Democratic nomination for state auditor, a position that is open this year.
  • 2 (2D) women – Lakresha Roberts and Kathy Jennings – are competing for the Democratic nomination for attorney general, a position that is open this year.
  • 1 (1D) woman – Colleen Davis – is running for the Democratic nomination to challenge Republican incumbent State Treasurer Ken Simpler in November. She has no primary opponent.

Percent of all Filed Statewide Executive Candidates (D/R): 55.6% (5 of 9)
Percent of all Filed Democratic Statewide Executive Candidates: 62.5% (5 of 8)
Percent of all Filed Republican Statewide Executive Candidates: 100% (1 of 1)