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American History  -  Politics

One Votes Counts U.S. TimeLine TimeLine Index State TimeLines Flag TimeLine
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Political Firsts of the 21st Century
  Last updated January, 2012.
  2nd Column: GOP / dem - either directly; served under; or appointed by
Administration. --- Misc. - unknown, non-partisan or not applicable.

1600's, 1700's & 1800s       -       1900s - 20th Century
Year Party ( <   The Party may be of the Adminstration that made the appointment, or under which served.)

       The Event

2000 GOP George W. Bush is the first President since 1888 to win the presidency without a plurality of the popular vote.
2000 dem Senator Joseph Lieberman, Vice Presidential candidate is the first Jew on a major party's presidential ticket.
2000 dem Hillary Rodham Clinton is the first, "First Lady" to be elected to any public office, when she is elected Senator from New York.
2000 dem Satveer Chaudhary is the first Asian-Indian-American to serve as a senator in the United States when elected to the Minnesota State Senate.
2000 dem Norman Y. Mineta (Japanese-American) becomes Secretary of Commerce, the first Asian-American appointed by the President to the Cabinet.
See 1971, 2001.
2000 GOP The first Chinese-American to hold a U.S. Attorney position was Norman Bay when he becomes the U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico.
2000 dem Bill Clinton visits Vietnam on November 16th to be the first sitting president to do so.
2001 GOP President George W. Bush appoints Condoleezza Rice as National Security Advisor, officially the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs.  She is the first woman and Black woman to hold the position.
2001 GOP President George W. Bush appoints Elaine Chao (Chinese American) Secretary of Labor,  She is the first Asian-American Woman to hold a position in a Presidential cabinet.
2001 GOP President George W. Bush appoints Norman Y. Mineta as U.S. Secretary of Transportation.  He is the first Asian-American to hold the position.  This appointment also makes Mineta the first cabinet member to directly switch from a Democratic to Republican cabinet.
See 1971, 2000.
2001 dem

The First Asian-Pacific Island-American woman, Wilma Chan, was elected to the California State Assembly; District 16, in 2001.

2001 Misc. John Liu is the first Asain-Pacific Islander-American elected to the New York City Council. He represented Flushing, Queens.
2002 GOP Debra W. Yang (Chinese-American) is appointed in May 2002 by President Bush becoming as United States Attorney for the Central District of California. She is the first Asian American woman to serve as a U.S. Attorney.
2002 GOP Linda Lingle is elected the first woman governor of Hawaii.
2002 dem State Rep. Swati Dandekar is the first Asian Indian-American woman to be elected to a legislative body in the United States; Iowa, Legislative District 36.
2002 dem Susan Lee is the first Asian-Pacific Islander-American woman to serve in the Maryland House of Delegates; 16th District.
2002 dem Mee Moua becomes the first Hmong legislator in the U.S. when she is elected to the Minnesota State Senate; Legislative District 67.
2002 Misc The first Asian American elected to the New Jersey General Assembly was Upendra J. Chivukula.
2002 Misc The first Asian American to become Mayor Pro Tem of Houston, Texas was Gordon Quan from 2002 - 2004.
See 1999.
2002 Misc In July, Washington State is the first to allow electronic filing for office, over the internet.
2002 Misc In November, Georgia is the first state to have touch-screen voting in all precincts.
2002 GOP John Herrington is the first Native-American to be an astronaut.  Herrington is from the Chickasaw Nation in Oklahoma.
2003 dem Nancy Pelossi becomes the first woman to serve as the democratic minority leader in the U.S. House of Representatives; California, 8th Congressional District.
See 2007.
2003 GOP Karen Tandy becomes the first woman U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration chief when confirmed by Congress in July, 2003.
2003 GOP Bobby Jindal is the first Asian-Indian-American to make a bid for governor in Louisiana
See 2004, See 2007
2003 dem Kathleen Blanco becomes Louisiana's first woman governor wining the race by just 4 percentage points in November, 2003.
2003 GOP Sworn in on January 14th, Marha J. Wong (Chinese-American) is the first Asian-American elected to serve in the Texas state government, as a State Representative from the 134th Legislative District.
See 1993.
2004 GOP George W. Bush wins re-election as President, receiving the greatest number of popular votes of any presidential candidate in U.S. History.  
2004 GOP Bobby Jindal, Republican from Louisiana, becomes the first Asian-Indian-American elected to the U.S. Congress in 48 years. 
See 1956 - See 2007.
2004 Misc.  The first Asian American elected to the New York State Legislature was Jimmy Meng (Chinese American).
2004 GOP The first Vietnamese American to serve in a U.S. state legislature was Van Tran when elected to the California State Assembly in 2004.
2004 dem The first Vietnamese American elected to the Texas Legislture was Hubert Vo, who immigrated from Vietnam.
2004 Misc. Ruth Asmundson of Davis, California is the first Filipino-American to become a mayor of a major California city.
2004 Misc. Heather Jeanne Fong becomes the first woman and first woman Asian American to head a major metropolitan police force whe whe becomes the Police Chief for San Francisco, California.
2004 Lib The first issuance of marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couple are ordered, in San Francisco, California on the unofficial "National Freedom to Marry Day," by Mayor Gavin Newsom. Courts later declare the licenses void.
2004 GOP
Dino Rossi is the first Candidate to have won an election, then upon feeble challenges has the victory removed and given to his opponent Christine Gregoire who had "won" upon votes that were more than offset by votes declared invalid. - Dino wins 2 of 3 recounts; Christine wins 1 of 3 recounts and has votes nullified, but is allowed by an activist court judge to be installed as Washington State Governor. (All three counts differed by less than 200 votes and 1700 votes were declared invalid, yet the Judge failed to disqualify the election.)
2005 GOP Condoleezza Rice, National Security Advisor, becomes Secretary of State to replace General Colin Powell. Rice is the first woman and first Black woman to hold the position.
2005 dem California's 15th District U.S. Congressman Mike Honda becomes the highest-ranking Asian American in the Democratic National Committee when he becomes the Democrat Party Vice Chair.
2005 GOP Alberto R. Gonzales (Cubin-American) is appointed and confirmed as the first Hispanic to be U.S. Attorney General.
2005 GOP President George W. Bush is the first U.S. president to attend a Russian victory parade on May 9th at Red Square in Moscow. Hailing the Nazi defeat, President Bush describes the post-war occupation of Eastern Europe by the Soviets as "one of the greatest wrongs of history."
2005 dem Christine Gregoire is installed as Governor of Washington State without having received a legitimate majority of votes. In the 2004 election less than 140 votes separated her and opponent Dino Rossi. The first count gave the win to Rossi; challenged, the second count gave the victory to Rossi; challenged again, the third count, with more votes found in King County, gave the win to Gregoire. Subsequently the courts declared around 1700 votes invalid but allowed Democrat Gregoire to be installed as Governor, upon a invalid vote. Truly this was the first clearly and documented "stolen" election.


2006 dem The first U.S. candidate to use on-demand advertising to reach voters was Frank Caprio of Rhode Island who ran for General Treasurer.
2006 dem Dick DeVos for Michigan Governor had the first handheld mobile campaign website (phone)
On on November 1, 2006 he delivered the first Mobile Video Campaign Ad.
2006 Con. Montana's Rick Jore becomes the first candidate of the Constitution Party to be elected to a state office, in 2006.
2006 Misc. Maine Public Broadcasting held the first Political Mobile Phone Poll on November 4th, 2006.
2006 GOP In 2006 Sarah Palin takes office on December 4th as Alaska's first woman Governor.
2007 dem The first woman minority speaker of the U.S. House, Nancy Pelosi, becomes the first woman Speaker of the House by a party-line vote of 233-202, on January 04, 2007.
See 2003.
2007 GOP Rachel Kunjummen Paulose becomes U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota on March 9, 2007. She is the first Woman, first Asian-Indian-American woman and the youngest to hold the position.
2007 Misc. The first Hindu prayer is read in the United States Senate in 2007 by Rajan Zed a Prominent Hindu chaplain.
2007 dem Paula Hammond is appointed to be Washington State's first woman Secretary of Transportation in October, 2007.
2007 GOP In a Landslide victory in the Louisiana October Primary Bobby Jindal takes 54% of the vote to take the position of Governor.  He is the first Asian-Indian-American to become a Governor of a U.S. state. Jindal is the first person of color to be Governor of Louisiana since 1872, during reconstruction. Bobby Jindal is a pro-life, pro-gun, anti-tax Rhodes scholor.
See 2003 - See 2004.
2007 Misc. In February, Virginia becomes the first state of the Union to express "regret" for the past institution of Slavery. In a resolution the state expresses a "profound regret" for the role it played in history. The resolution included the exploitation of the Native American Indian.
2007 Whig The Florida Whig Party is officially recognized by the State of Florida as a minor third party. The Whig Party has not existed for 150 years, although there has been some Whig activity on the internet for several years.
2007 Misc. Harvard University in February, 2007 gets its first woman President, Drew Gilpin Faust.
2007 GOP Peggy Whitson became the first woman to command the International Space Station on October 19, 2007
2008 dem At the National Democratic Convention in Denver, Colorado Barak Obama becomes the first Black American to become a Presidential Candidate on any major party ticket on August 27th, 2008.
2008 GOP Sarah Palin becomes the first Woman Vice Presidential candidate on the Republican Ticket when Senator John Mcain accepts the nomination for President at the GOP National Convention in Minneapolis-St Paul, Minnesota On September 4th, 2008
2008 GOP Major Jennifer Grieves became the first woman Marine One commander in May 2008. She was the second woman assigned to the unit.
2008 dem The first woman and first Black American woman is unanimously elected by the California State Assembly to be the Assembly Speaker, in March, 2008.
2008 Misc. Dionne Mack-Harvin becomes the first Black American Woman in New York to head a major Library System when she is appointed on March 22, 2007 as head of the Brooklyn Public Library.
2008 dem
Barack Hussein Obama became the first Black-American on a Major National Party ticket when he wins the delegates required to make him the Democratic Party's presidential nominee.
2008 dem
Barack Hussein Obama is elected the first Black American President when elected in November, 2008. Obama is also the first President to have been a member of a Socialist party (New Party in Illinois, 1996).
See 1996 Political Firsts -
Barack Hussein Obama
2009 dem
Barack Hussein Obama is inaugurated as the first Black American President on January 20th, 2009. Obama is first for the most spending of first-year presidents out-spending any other. Obama's first-year spending was double that of George W Bush. Obama is also the first President to have been a member of a Socialist party (New Party in Illinois, 1996).
See 1996 Political Firsts -
Barack Hussein Obama
2009 dem
The transition team of President-elect Obama announced on January 5th, 2009 that Elena Kagan would be nominated the first woman to serve permanently as Solicitor General. She was nominated by Obama on January 26th and confirmed by the US Senate on March 19th.
2009 GOP Michael Steel becomes Chairman of the Republican National Committee on January 30th. He is the first African-American to hold the position.
2009 Misc
On February 14th, Saudia Arabia appointed its first woman minister. a US-educated former teacher, Nora bint Abdullah al-Fayez became the deputy education minister, over a new department for female students.
2009 dem Gary Locke becomes the first Asain American to become the first Chinese American Secretary of Commerce in the President's cabinet.
2009 Misc
On May 1st, Carol McDuffy becomes the first woman poet-laurette of the United Kingdom. The is also the first openly-gay person to hold the office.
2009 Misc. Annise Parker is the first openly gay mayor of Houston Texas, elected on November 3rd, 2009. Parker is also the second woman to hold the position.
2009 Misc. The November 3rd election in the Big Apple, New York City leaves the white city council members in the minority for the first time in the city's history.
2009 Misc. On November 3rd the Big Apple, New York City elected John Liu as City Controller. He is the first Asian-American to win a citywide race in the city.
2009 dem In November Bill Owens becomes the first democrat to be elected to Pittsburgh's 11-county 23rd Congressional District since the Civil War.
2009 dem Syracuse, New York elects Stephanie Miner as its first woman mayor on November 4th, 2009.
2009 Misc For the first time minority students became the majority in the southern states averaging out at 50.8%. In 2008 the break-down was 50/50.
2010 GOP Allen B. West is elected to serve Florida as U.S. Reprensentative. Allen is the first Black Republican Congressman from Florida since Josiah T. Walls during Reconstruction.
Sheila Oliver is sworn in  at the Trenton War Memorial near the Statehouse becoming New Jersey's first black female Assembly Speaker on January 12th.
2010 dem In February, John Gibbons was sworn in as the first Black Marshal over Federal Court security in Boston, Springfield and Worcester.
2010 dem California's half-Indian American, Kamala Harris, becomes the first female, first African American, and first Asian American state attorney general in the United States.
2010 GOP Nikki Haley becomes the first female & governor of South Carolina when elected in the 2010 election cycle. She is the first Sikh American and 2nd Indian American governor in U.S. history. Haley is the 3rd Asain American to become a governor in the continental U.S.
2011 Misc. Jean Quan becomes the first female and first Asian-American mayor of Oakland, California when  sworn into office in January.
2011 dem
Hansen Hashim Clarke becomes the first United States Congressman of Bangladeshi descent when he takes Michigan's 13th seat as U.S. Representative in January, 2011. He won the election in August.
2011 Misc. Jacksonville, Florida has it's first African-American Mayor when Alvin Brown is elected in May. Brown has also been Floriday's first Black Sheriff.
2011 Misc. In July, in Nevada, Pamela A. Goynes-Brown is the first Black woman elected to the North Las Vegas City Council.
2011 mil After 30 years of service 52 year old, Marcia Anderson is promoted as America's first Black woman two-star general in the U.S. Army. Her second star was presented on September 29th.
2011 dem A woman is overwhelmingly elected Mayor, the first for Gary, Indiana. Karen Freeman-Wilson won with 86% of the vote against an independent with only 7.5%. This election also makes Karen the first Female African-American mayor in the history of Indiana.
2011 Misc. Herb Wesson, Los Angeles Councilman, becomes the first African-American to be appointed  president of the City Council. Councilman Wesson was elected president in November.
2011 dem Cheryl Austin was elected to the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas in Pennsylvania, becoming the first black female on the county court.
2011 Misc. Interim mayor Ed Lee is elected the first Asain-American & first Chinese-American Mayor of San Francisco, California in November.
© Copyright 2005-06-07-08-10 Roger W Hancock 

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Sources for Political Firsts -
New Party News; Pub. by New Party National Committee, Inc.; Vol. V, No. 2, Spring 1996; Front Page. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -{CE7AAE34-50DE-4619-9A... - - - - - - - - - - - -
Email reply (10-26-05) from Eric Banner, Constituent Services Liaison, Office of Governor Kathleen Sebelius, Kansas. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - of Governors of Hawaii -  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -,November24,2009; Obama Shatters Spending Record for First-Year Presidents - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
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First congresswoman elected from Ohio was Frances P. Bolton
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