A thriving democracy is within our reach, but new strategies are needed to level the playing field for women candidates across the racial, ideological, and geographic spectrum so that our nation's rich diversity is reflected in our elected bodies.
Electing more women to government will strengthen our democracy by making it more representative, reviving bipartisanship & collaboration, improving policy outcomes, encouraging a new style of leadership, and cultivating trust in our elected bodies.
The U.S. ranks behind 102 nations for women's representation, with women making up a quarter or less of every level of government. Yet progress is possible. With the momentum of a growing movement pushing us forward, we can win gender parity in our lifetimes - but only with new strategies that target the structural causes of women’s underrepresentation.
There were two excellent editorials in The New York Times this week that are grounded in conversations about reforms to strengthen our democracy by increasing the numbers of House members and electing them with Ranked Choice Voting in multi-seat districts which elect more women and people of color to office. I know many of us are focused on getting candidates elected in the next election cycle but if we really want to win parity we must digest and engage with medium and long term systems strategies that will help to deliver the representative democracy we all crave: Multimember districts offer other important benefits, too. When three or five members of Congress all represent the same district, it’s much harder for politicians to gerrymander themselves and their party into permanent power. And experience from the states shows that more women and minorities get elected in multimember districts.Read More
There were indeed a lot of new faces and MANY 'firsts' elected to Congress and state houses this week with votes in some states still being tallied - that's the great news, but republican women's representation fell in Congress and that will remain a challenge for the short term at least. The National Conference of State Legislatures and the Center for American Women and Politics have of course done a great job tracking the results and here is where things stand at the moment:Read More
Before the final frenzy of GOTV and the inevitable coverage of close wins and losses and the discussion of what it all means for our democracy, I wanted to take a moment to thank all the terrific candidates and the groups and individuals who have helped them make this year a milestone for women candidates. Thank you. Thanks to the candidates, thanks to all of you who have supported the candidates, thanks to the many organizations who have identified & guided the candidates, thanks to all the donors who have helped to make their campaigns viable, and thanks to all those who have supported their wives/mothers/daughters/sisters as they run for office.Read More
At the current rate of change, it will take centuries to achieve gender parity for women in elective office - we can't wait that long for an equal voice in government.
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