Margaret Smith – first woman for President

Margaret Madeline Chase Smith (December 14, 1897 – May 29, 1995) was a United States politician. A member of the Republican Party, she served as a U.S Representative (1940–49) and a U.S. Senator (1949–73) from Maine. She was the first woman to serve in both houses of the United States Congress, and the first woman to represent Maine in either. A moderate Republican, she was among the first to criticize the tactics of McCarthyism in her 1950 speech, “Declaration of Conscience”.

Smith was a candidate for the Republican nomination in the 1964 presidential election; she was the first woman to be placed in nomination for the presidency at a major party’s convention. Upon leaving office, she was the longest-serving female Senator in history, a distinction that was not surpassed until January 5, 2011, when Senator Barbara Mikulski was sworn in for a fifth term. To date, Smith is ranked as the longest-serving Republican woman in the Senate.

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