Vermont likely to elect its 1st woman to Congress this year

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) – Vermont appears poised to lose its distinction of being the only state in the country that has never sent a woman to Congress.

There are at least five women competing in the Aug. 9 primary for the seat being vacated by the state’s lone U.S. House member, Democratic Rep. Peter Welch, who’s running for Senate.

Given Vermont’s liberal reputation, it might seem strange that it would be the final state to send a woman to Congress. But Vermont’s tiny population makes it one of a handful of states with the smallest possible congressional delegation – two senators and one House member.

And Vermont has traditionally reelected its incumbents, who have happened to be white men who’ve served for long stretches.