Last week, a record number of new congresswomen were officially sworn into their positions to begin the 113th Congressional session.
One hundred women will be filling the seats of Congress in the new session. The total number of women holding seats in the House of Representatives is now 80, up from 77 in the last Congressional session. In the Senate, women hold 20 seats in the new Congress, up from 17 in the last session.
Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) is the first openly gay member of the Senate.
Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) is the first Asian-American woman elected to the US Senate.
Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is the first woman ever elected to the US Senate from the state of Massachusetts.
Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-8) is an Iraq War veteran who worked in the Obama administration.
Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI-2) is the first Hindu ever elected to the US House.
While the gains in the number of women in Congress are a major achievement in gender equality, women are still not sufficiently represented in the legislature. Despite being half the population, women only compromise about 20% of Congress.
Media Resources: New York Times 1/3/2013; Reuters 1/3/2013; Feminist Daily Newswire 11/7/2012
7/1/2015 Women's Rights Activists are Suing the Kenyan Government for Reproductive Rights - A woman in Kenya is suing the Kenyan government for failure to provide safe and legal abortions, which caused her daughter - a 15-year-old rape victim - to suffer a kidney failure after undergoing the procedure illegally.
Currently, there are four petitioners on the case: the mother of the survivor, the Federation of Women Lawyers-Kenya, and two other women's rights advocates. . . .
6/30/2015 Supreme Court Ruling Prevents Gerrymandering in Arizona - In a 5-4 decision delivered by Justice Ginsburg this morning, the Supreme Court upheld Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission, allowing the use of independent state commissions that draw federal congressional districts, taking that power away from the state legislature.
This gives states an opportunity to deal with partisan gerrymandering by giving an independent commission power to draw federal congressional districts.
In 2000, Arizona voters amended their constitution, shifting the responsibility of drawing congressional districts, previously held by the state legislature, to a panel called the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. . . .