Lauren Underwood sworn in as youngest ever black woman in Congress; Illinois’ freshmen Democrats vote Pelosi for speaker | Chicago Tribune



Three new Illinois Democrats were sworn into Congress on Thursday, capping a blue wave that helped the party win the U.S. House and taking their seats amid ongoing partisan wars over President Donald Trump, his policies and a federal government shutdown that has halted services across the country.

Registered nurse Lauren Underwood, 32, of Naperville, became the youngest black woman in U.S. history to serve in the House when lawmakers took the oath Thursday afternoon. Clean-energy entrepreneur Sean Casten of Downers Grove, another political newcomer holding elected office for the first time, joined her in representing vast swaths of suburban territory in Chicago’s collar counties long held by Republicans. And Jesus “Chuy” Garcia of Chicago replaced longtime Democratic U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, who was vocal on immigration issues.