College Freshman Is Now America’s Youngest State Legislator


Ready to feel like an underachiever? An 18-year-old-freshman was just elected as a delegate in the West Virginia House. While you were busy stressing out about what kind of ears to wear for Halloween, she was campaigning against two candidates. Last night, as you fought your Halloween hangover that just won’t ghost, she was winning an election, becoming the youngest elected state legislator in America. I’d say we could celebrate over drinks, but she’s not even legal yet.

Saira Blair is 18 years old, and officially the most impressive freshman in the United States. This West Virginia University freshman won 63% of the vote. You know how you’re stressed out about sorority elections, or becoming the representative for your floor? Saira has other issues on her mind. It could help that she’s the daughter of a Republican state senator, so she basically has politics in her DNA. My dad’s also a politician, but I spent most of 18 with a Solo cup in hand on the nearest raised surface, which would probably not bode well for me. While most of 18 was forgotten after a little too much Hunch Punch, I have Timehop to remind me that I could never run for office with controversy.

Before this, Jeramey Anderson, a 22-year-old Tulane graduate, was the youngest legislator when he was sworn into Mississippi’s House of Representatives. Blair beat a 44-year-old Democrat named Layne Diehl. When she ran in May, she beat a two-time incumbent for the Republican nomination. Most impressive? She was only 17, which means she couldn’t even vote for herself. Her focus is improving the Republican party by making it more inclusive. She wants young women, and young voters, to feel like they belong and have a voice.

Blair is extremely conservative — she was endorsed by the NRA, describes herself as “pro-life, pro-family, pro 2nd Amendment,” and opposes abortion, the Common Core, and gay marriage. Even if her beliefs conflict with yours, it’s still impressive that a college freshman ran a successful political campaign that wasn’t on campus.

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