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Mary T. Norton, first woman Democrat elected to Congress.
Rep. Mary T. Norton
Every liberal is well-acquainted with the election's additions of women to the U.S. Senate this week. In perhaps the most satisfying race, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts dumped Scott Brown and gave hope that the legacy of Ted Kennedy, who held that seat for nearly half a century, will be enhanced by her work. Four other women newcomers, three of them Democrats, will also join the Senate roster, for a total of 20 women in the Senate, 16 of them Democrats. Currently there are 17, a dozen of them Democrats.

The other newcomers took open seats: Mazie Hirono (D-HI); Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND); and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI); plus Deb Fischer (R-NE). In January, they will join six incumbents who were reelected: Dianne Feinstein (D-CA); Debbie Stabenow (D-MI); Amy Klobuchar (D-MN); Claire McCaskill (D-MO); Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY); and Maria Cantwell (D-WA). Nine other Senate women, six Democrats and three Republicans, were not up for reelection.

And in the House, at least 77 women will take seats in two months, 57 of them Democrats. In both houses of Congress, that's a record number. Women were also added in several state legislatures (although not enough to beat the 2009 record), the New Hampshire congressional delegation is all women, and so is the governor there. Two new representatives are women who served combat tours in Iraq, Tammy Duckworth of Illinois (a helicopter pilot) and Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii (with a field medical unit), and Tammy Baldwin will be the first openly gay person in the Senate. The new House members include six women of color, all Democrats: one African-American; three Asian/Pacific Islander Americans; and two Latinas. In the House will be a record total of 28 women of color (26 Democrats, two Republicans), including 13 African American women, all Democrats, nine Latinas (seven Democrats and two Republicans), and 6 Asian/Pacific Islander Americans, all Democrats.  

All of which, of course, makes it tempting to call this the "Year of the Woman." Ann Friedman at New York Magazine warns us off that course:

[...] something didn’t sit quite right as I watched media outlets from Mother Jones to The Washington Post to Salon to WNYC declare 2012 another Year of the Woman. I’m not thrilled to label this “our year” when women are nowhere near achieving parity. The “Year of the Woman” narrative just goes to show that we’re still labeling women’s marginal electoral successes as outliers—more wishful thinking than watershed moment. As Senator Barbara Mikulski put it twenty years ago, “Calling 1992 the Year of the Woman makes it sound like the Year of the Caribou or the Year of the Asparagus.  We’re not a fad, a fancy, or a year.”

To the contrary—apparently we’re every year. The “Year of the Woman” label has been slapped on every election in which women have made any sort of progress, no matter how minimal. Some observers dubbed 1984 the Year of the Woman when Geraldine Ferraro became the first woman to appear on a major-party presidential ticket. There were also some tepid predictions that the 1988 and 1990 elections would be groundbreaking for women. Then came 1992. But, though that election brought a solid group of women to Congress (four of the senators are still serving), the numbers were hardly approaching parity.

Indeed, some people considered 1972 the "year of the woman" when both houses of Congress passed the Equal Rights Amendment. That, of course, never got added to the Constitution.

Despite the gains this year, the United States, which was way ahead of most Western democracies when Montanan (and Republican) Jeanette Rankin was elected to a single term in the House in 1916, is now well behind. In the five decades after Rankin was elected, just 49 women served in the House or Senate, more than half of them appointed or elected to fill out the terms of dead husbands and then not reelected. It took until 1981 before 20 women held seats in the House at the same time.

The combined percentage of women in the Senate and House come January will be 18 percent. The current average percentage of women in the parliamentary bodies of the 56 countries of Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe is 23.4 percent. In the Americas, it is 23.8 percent. In the five Nordic countries, it is 42 percent.

What matters, of course, is not numbers but policy. A fourth of Sudan's parliament is women, and they have little to show for it. NARAL points out that when the 113th House of Representatives convenes in two months, 237 anti-choice members will still be in charge of any legislation on reproductive rights. The vast majority of these members are Republicans, a privileged patriarchy that will be shaping the debate if not running the show on a whole range of other issues of importance, to both women and men, from child care to warfare.

One of the longer-serving members of Congress, 12-term Mary T. Norton of New Jersey, was also the first woman Democrat elected, in 1924. A staunch Catholic, she opposed weakening laws against disseminating birth control information, saying people should "control themselves." She also opposed the Equal Rights Amendment first introduced in 1923 because she was afraid it would lead to women not being protected in the industrial workforce.

But her work in favor of the rights of working people can still be felt today in the form of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. As pointed out in the book Women of Congress: A Twentieth-Century Odyssey, written by Rep. Marcy Kaptur, an Ohio congresswoman who won reelection to her 15th term Tuesday, Norton personally guided that act through committee and onto the House floor for a vote:

The only significant New Deal reform to pass in President Franklin Roosevelt’s second term, the act provided for a 40-hour work week, outlawed child labor, and set a minimum wage of 25 cents per hour. To get the controversial bill out of the Rules Committee, which determined what legislation was to be debated on the floor and which was controlled by “anti-New Deal” conservative Democrats, Norton resorted to a little-used parliamentary procedure known as the discharge petition. She got 218 of her colleagues (half the total House membership, plus one) to sign the petition to bring the bill to a vote. The measure failed to pass, but Norton again circulated a discharge petition and managed to get a revised measure to the floor, which passed. “I’m prouder of getting that bill through the House than anything else I’ve done in my life,” Norton recalled.
In these days when Republicans seek to dilute or demolish New Deal and Great Society programs, it would be terrific if leaders among that record number of women in Congress would, like Norton, spur elected Democrats to stop playing defense so much of the time and move ahead with fresh initiatives that improve the lives of working women and men the way those initiatives three-quarters of a century ago have done.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 03:54 PM PST.

Also republished by Abortion and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  effects of the War on Women (& their bodies)/nt (5+ / 0-)

    yksitoista ulotteinen presidentin shakki. / tappaa kaikki natsit "Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) 政治委员, 政委‽ Warning - some snark above ‽

    by annieli on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:03:21 PM PST

  •  I'm thrilled to see so many women elected. (11+ / 0-)

    It might be unfair, but I feel women get the issues at a level that most men in Congress have failed to manage. I hope these women prove me right and are able to lead their fellow male counterparts in making truly progressive change.

  •  You make excellent points about needing a lot (6+ / 0-)

    women in Congress before we can legitimately call it the year of the woman.  

    But, in the meantime, I am so impressed and hopeful about Senator Elizabeth Warren that will not be surprised if she advances progressive causes with the equivalent vigor or 5 or 10 "ordinary" Senators.

     

    The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

    by HoundDog on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:21:38 PM PST

    •  Agreed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      417els

      there have been way too many "years of the women" in my long lifetime already, with little sign of sustained progress.  As in 1992, it took some egregious political attacks on women to get even this much traction this year.
      But the election of Elizabeth Warren does give me hope.  She has the cpacity to be a catalyst for far greater change.

  •  I'm going out on a limb and say YES, even though (5+ / 0-)

    my district in Indiana (5) elected a Republican. Susan Brooks, even if she does absolutely nothing in the US House has to be 1000 X better than having Dan Burton in that spot.

  •  I hope so. (7+ / 0-)

    As one of those people, I am tired of being told what's good for me, hence my signature. I was pretty pissed off to watch the House introduce bill after bill on women's health issues in the last couple of years - mostly brought by men - when we have so many other things (jobs!) to deal with. Mitt Romney's campaign was so completely insulting that my 80 year old Republican mother even commented on it twice. Once when Ann did her phoney baloney (moms words) "I love women!" pronouncement and once when Mitt mentioned letting his employees work flex time so they could get home and cook dinner. My mom stayed home & raised the kids and defends it as a tough job to this day but she also knows that her daughters have professional careers and that's important too. She knows times have changed and we share household tasks with our spouses so we can all have fulfilling lives.

    Please women, rock the House and the Senate - maybe we'll become less of a special interest caricature in the next campaign season (if I see war on women stated with air quotation marks one more time I might break my teevee)

    I'm pretty tired of being told what I care about.

    by hulibow on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:33:48 PM PST

  •  Hey, MB although it is off-topic I wanted to let (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Woody, ms badger, BlueJessamine

    you know I mentioned you and thanked you and the founding Daily Kos team in a little noticed post election reflection on what an effective team you and we've built here, which you might find interesting. Thank You Markos, and Daily Kos Writers, and Readers Who Have Built This Powerful Democratic Voice

    The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

    by HoundDog on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:36:40 PM PST

  •  I hope that it is the start of a trend (3+ / 0-)

    Women have been missing in American politics;

    http://www.ipu.org/...

    The American political system, run by men, is in need of repair.   Women can only help.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:41:04 PM PST

  •  Thanks for the commentary (8+ / 0-)

    and the history lesson. In many ways things haven't changed, and I agree it isn't time to "celebrate."

    btw THIS is Gladys Pyle:

    She was a remarkable woman.

    Senator Gladys Pyle filled the vacant Senate seat from November 9, 1938 until January 3, 1939. She was the first woman elected to the Senate without having been appointed first. Also she was the first woman Republican to serve in the Senate.

    She moved to Washington, DC for the two month term, as there were rumors that President Roosevelt would call a special session to take advantage of the Democratic majority in Congress. No special session was called, and Senator Pyle never was sworn in. However, during the time she filled the position, she advocated on behalf of her constituency. Most expenses were paid out of her own pocket. Since she was not sworn in, she did not have a salary.

    And she was a cousin of Jim's.

    If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one. ~ Mother Teresa

    by Melanie in IA on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 04:52:27 PM PST

    •  The Republican party (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Melanie in IA, Woody, NonnyO

      was very different back then.  I wish they would come back.

      "You just think you're a Democrat. You'll grow out of it." My Mother, when I was 50+

      by MNGrandma on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:13:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They also can claim MT's Jeannette Rankin... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Melanie in IA

        ... first woman in the House of Representatives, elected the first time in 1916 before women could vote, and elected again in 1940.  Jeannette Rankin voted against going to war in WWI and WWII, both.

        Minnesota's first woman Representative was a Democrat, Coya Knutson.

        Knutson was the first woman elected to Congress from Minnesota, and is remembered today for the notorious "Coya, Come Home" letter supposedly written by her then-estranged husband, Andy, urging her to give up her seat and not seek reelection in 1958. Political rivals had put him up to it, and it was seen as instrumental in her ensuing defeat. The incident is often cited as an example of sexism in American politics.
        I remember when this happened (my childhood home was in her district), and my mother was full of scorn for Coya's drunken dipstick of a husband who treated her so badly.

        I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

        by NonnyO on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 06:07:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Unbought and Unbossed (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drmah, Melanie in IA, eyesoars, cai

      Shirley Chisolm

      Shirley Chisholm (Wikipedia)

      NY Times Obit

  •  All of the new Democratic women Senators (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Woody, NonnyO, cai

    are strong, accomplished and WILL speaks their minds and stand up for important policies. (No need to single out Sen-elect Warren...) I've had the privilege of seeing all 4 of them at various events in NYC, and I don't think any of them will abide by "politics as usual." Every one of them has had to fight like hell to make it where she is today- no turning back now!

    I haven't met many of the new House members, but if they're anything like Tulsi Gabbard, whom I did meet a couple of weeks ago, they'll also make their mark in the House. Of course it will be much harder there- the great thing about sites like this one is that we can and will help amplify their voices way beyond the Beltway, until the Dems have the House again!

    Cheers--

    •  Warren singled out because she was the only... (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Woody, NonnyO, Silverleaf, eyesoars, cai

      ...woman to beat a Senate incumbent, which may her victory sweeter, not because the other three won't also speak up.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:13:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Another I would like to single out: Mazie Hirono. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        maryru, 714day

        She's gonna make a great Senator for a lot of reasons. But I think we should all pause for a minute to reflect that she is only the second woman of color EVER elected to the Senate. [Carol Moseley Braun, IIRC, served one term representing Illinois in the 1990s.] How many women of color do we have in this nation? How many have lived, worked and helped build this country throughout our history?

        That Mazie is an immigrant--born in Japan--makes her voice even more powerful in important policy discussions to come.

        Ho'oponopono. To make things right; restore harmony; heal.

        by earicicle on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:24:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Nah (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NonnyO

    How many women of both parties voted for Bush's wars?  How many Republican women voted against Obamacare?  How many Republican women voted against Lily Ledbetter?

  •  Why didn't Kaili Joy write this post? (0+ / 0-)

    "I believe more women should carry guns. I believe armed women will make the world a better place. Women need to come to think of themselves not as victims but as dangerous." Anna Pigeon

    by glorificus on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:29:51 PM PST

    •  Because men can write about... (6+ / 0-)

      ...these matters, too.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:31:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  so only a woman can write about issues involving (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mimi, BlueJessamine, cai

      women?

      over the years, i have written about issues involving Native Americans, or Black Americans, and i am white. i basically report on the issues, and don't get into feelings or tell people what to think or do.

      Meteor Blades is doing the same here. As a feminist, he has a big idea of our perspective but can't know all of it because he has not lived in our shoes. But he is not telling women what to think or feel or do.

      I think it is good post and am glad he wrote it.

      Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Mohandas K. Gandhi

      by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:54:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Maybe you should ask her (0+ / 0-)

      While we wait for that, what's your opinion on the post?

      •  Post is good, MB always does a fine job. The (0+ / 0-)

        current number of women in Congress is still pathetic. Although I think he's been a little Eeyorish on the jobs numbers, but that's probably just me.

        I've seen Kaili Joy do a LOT of extremely funny and needly posts on the War on Women.

        I think there are too many men writing on the front page, no matter how high the estrogen level is in the back office according to Markos.

        Mostly I was just curious how the audience would react.

        "I believe more women should carry guns. I believe armed women will make the world a better place. Women need to come to think of themselves not as victims but as dangerous." Anna Pigeon

        by glorificus on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 08:40:57 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Will it make a difference? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlueJessamine

    I  don't honestly know.

    I do know that Amy Klobuchar is far too conservative for my liking (seems to be more DINO than Dem), and even Al Franken isn't all that far behind her for conservativeness.

    My new Rep, Rick Nolan, has been in Congress before when he represented Dist. 6 [where that moron Guano Loco Bachmann got elected again by the crazies there].  Now Rick Nolan represents Dist. 8, and when I listened to his acceptance speech, he mentioned that 'Social Security and Medicare are NOT entitlement programs, but Earned Benefits' (my jaw literally dropped with the echo in my head; I've written those words on DK before so I have to wonder if he or his speech writer hang out at DK).  He also said he's going to work on getting Citizens United overturned.  I think I should write to him and let him know he needs to contact Bernie Sanders who is working on that already.  Maybe they can join forces.  (For all I know, perhaps they were in the House together before?  I don't know.  Bernie was a Rep before he was a Senator.)

    I'd like to see women make a difference in the Senate.  Some, like Amy, are too close to the corporations and big business for my comfort level (medical businesses, for one, which raises my hackles), and she irritated me when she was in favor of removing wolves from the endangered species list and there is currently now a hunting season on wolves going on.

    I'd like to think more women will make a difference..., but if they become like Amy, they probably won't distinguish themselves in any way.

    If women were going to be representative of the population, 51 women would have to be elected since the general population of the US is 51% female.  That could get some attention.

    Real progress would be for a Democratic woman to be elected president.  I'm old, so I don't expect to see that in my lifetime.  [I wouldn't vote for a Repuke woman either, nor just any woman, even Dem, but one who has the potential to do what the people of the US want, not the bloody corporations.  I'm just afraid too many women are going to become bought-and-paid-for corporate whores, just like their male counterparts.]

    I'll wait and see....

    I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

    by NonnyO on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 05:46:11 PM PST

  •  the last sentence of this diary is the best (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlueJessamine

    And I hope these women start pushing against other women like Bachmann as well.

  •  Nice read, Blades! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlueJessamine

    Thanks

  •  More women in politics, specially Democrats! (0+ / 0-)

    Today I'm going to;

    http://sistergiant.com/...

    I'll blog about it later.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 09:23:02 AM PST

  •  Per Wikipedia (7+ / 0-)

    The US is one of 4 countries that don't mandate paid parental leave of any kind. The other 3 are Liberia, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland. I wonder if our low percentage of women has anything to do with that.

  •  Yes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    earicicle, swampyankee

    Historically the more representative of the general population a governing body is, the more effective they are.

    "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:19:44 PM PST

  •  I won't be satisfied until we pass the ERA. (6+ / 0-)

    202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

    by cany on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:20:24 PM PST

    •  I'm with you (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      firenze, cany

      I still remember the shock of realizing that the mjority of people in my country did not want to acknowledge that I was an equal citizen.  Pretty big blow for a 20-year old idealist, and still stings to this day.  Most people don't realize that it never passed; I've mentioned it in the context of the current campaigns for marriage equality, for instance, and just get blank stares.  

      Sure would be nice to have it in the Constitution.

      •  And just to show how little people know, most (0+ / 0-)

        people think it IS in the constitution which is just as creepy!

        202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

        by cany on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 07:51:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Women... They're good for you. (0+ / 0-)

    More, everywhere, please.

    More on the court, more in congress, more in the oval office.

    Democratic, preferably. ;)

    -
    Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
    ~ Jerry Garcia

    by DeadHead on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:31:31 PM PST

  •  Get your god damnned dirty hands off my (0+ / 0-)

    Social Security.

    I want my future back, I want my job back. Anyone got a problem with that, go fuck yourselves.

    Is there anything wrong with SS that a good economy wouldn't fix?

    I want to repeal the Regan tax cuts, Repeal the 1986 Tax reform Act. I want 6 more tax brackets on the top .33%. A 70% top rate. I want cap gains at 30-33%.

    I want my fucking future back you fucking god damned MFin CSin SOBs.

    And I got 22 million friends that want their jobs and their fucking futures back Too.

    Photobucket

    Nope'''

    Photobucket

    Thats better.

    Photobucket

    Maybe American Crossroads?

    Photobucket

    Photobucket

    Photobucket

    Photobucket

    Photobucket

    FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:50:29 PM PST

  •  I find it rather depressing that (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FloraLine, Meteor Blades

    18% representation in Congress for a majority of the population is considered some kind of amazing Woman Year-worthy event.

    Um, no. I'm not celebrating that particular "record."

    Am I ecstatic that Elizabeth Warren won? Yes. Am I extremely happy that there are more women Senators than before? Yes. The trend is good. But does this new record number itself make me happy? No. 20 women in the Senate as a number is not a great thing.  20% of the Senate is still breathtaking under representation for America's majority.

    I'm glad there's been progress. I'm also very unhappy with how far we still have to go.

  •  Florence P. Dwyer (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    It's almost unthinkable that the Repugs would run a Flo Dwyer now.  She was my Rep when I was a kid. I even met her once. How did my Repug relatives get from Flo Dwyer to where they are now?  They morphed into lunatics before my eyes.

    Florence Price "Flo" Dwyer (July 4, 1902 - February 29, 1976), born Florence Louise Price in Reading, Pennsylvania, was an American Republican Party politician and U.S. Representative for New Jersey's 6th and 12th Congressional Districts. She was the second woman to be elected to the United States House of Representatives from New Jersey, the first being Mary Teresa Norton, who was also elected from the 12th district. She was the first woman from New Jersey to be elected to the House as a Republican. Dwyer was an advocate for women's rights throughout her political career.

    Dwyer served as an alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1944 and 1948. She was then elected to the New Jersey General Assembly, where she served from 1950 to 1956. Assemblywoman Dwyer introduced the Equal Pay for Equal Work bill, which was passed in 1952. The bill criminalized "discrimination in the rate of wages on the basis of sex" and later became a model for federal legislation.

    In 1956, Dwyer was elected to the United States House of Representatives for the first of eight terms. In 1962, she co-sponsored the Equal Pay Act, which was passed the following year. In 1970, she helped Representative Martha W. Griffiths to bring the Equal Rights Amendment to the floor of the House after it had stalled in committee decades earlier.

    "There ain't no sanity clause." Chico Marx

    by DJ Rix on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 08:11:48 PM PST

  •  Thank you for the history lesson on Rep. Norton. (0+ / 0-)

    I had no idea a woman was behind the 40 hour work week, minimum wage and outlawing child labor.

    Thanks for the wonderful diary.

  •  My condition for electing more women is that they (0+ / 0-)

    meet a certain minimum of sanity, human decency and intelligence.  

    I'm thinking of Virginia Foxx, Jean Schmidt and Marsha Blackburn as the poster women for women who under no circumstances should be allowed anywhere near elected office.

    As a progressive female, I would vote for a mediocre male (of the opposition party, if necessary) before voting for any of these women or their ilk.

    Elizabeth Warren...Tammy Duckworth are the standard to strive for (I mention these two, among other excellent office holders simply because they are newly elected  and were the two I was able to support with meager monetary donations).

    "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

    by 417els on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 08:45:57 PM PST

  •  I love women and I'm glad more got elected (0+ / 0-)

    but, that said, I vote based on what's between a person's ears not between a person's legs.

    On average, women are more Democratic, more liberal etc. than men. But on average, Switzerland is at sea level - throw the mountains into the lakes and it balances out.

  •  Two words: (0+ / 0-)

    Michelle Bachmann

    More words: Being a woman doesn't necessarily make you progressive or supportive of other human beings, as Rep. Bachmann demonstrates.  Simply adding more women is not necessarily the answer.

    Not to say we don't need to add more, or that the women who were added this year were awesome, but we do need to make sure they're the right ones.

    •  Seriously? (0+ / 0-)

      And every batshit crazy man can get elected without being frowned upon like that? True equality would mean appointing just as many lousy, insane or mediocre women as there are men. There's no reason women should have another special and subjective rule of being "the good ones" placed as a barrier in front of them - it just helps elect more dicks into office, literally and figuratively.

  •  Here's a quote from the first woman in Congress (0+ / 0-)
    You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake
    Jeannette Rankin

    and .... she was a Republican from Montana from 1941 to 1943 (this was back when the Republicans had some sane people).

  •  I was in college when the Congress passed the ERA (0+ / 0-)

    I am 67 now and still do not have equal rights under the Constitution.

    Women now openly fight and die for a country that does not give equal rights or respect as citizens.

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