Meet the New Feminists in Congress on Ms. magazine’s On The Issues with Michele Goodwin Podcast

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | January 13, 2021

On the Issues with Michele Goodwin is a new issues- and policy-focused podcast featuring feminist analysis, insightful conversations and exciting guests. This is the first podcast from Ms. magazine, a legacy feminist publication. In each bi-weekly episode, host Dr. Michele Goodwin and special guests will tackle the most compelling issues of our times, centering feminist concerns about rebuilding our nation and advancing the promise of equality.

A new episode—Meet the New Feminists in Congress (with Jennifer Steinhauer + Reps. Carolyn Bourdeaux, Teresa Leger Fernandez and Marie Newman)—is available now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and

This week, we introduce listeners to the new feminists in Congress—and discuss the significant challenges that lie ahead in 2021. Together, Dr. Goodwin and her guests examine the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol and what this violence signifies for our nation moving forward. Why did it happen and what can we learn from it? Will the President be impeached? And what does this atmosphere mean for the new feminists in Congress?

Dr. Goodwin is joined by Representative Carolyn Bourdeaux, representing Georgia’s 7th Congressional District; Representative Teresa Leger Fernandez, representing New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District; Representative Marie Newman, representing Illinois’s 3rd Congressional District; and Jennifer Steinhauer, a New York Times journalist and author of The Firsts: The Inside Story of the Women Reshaping Congress.

Their conversation covered a wide range of topics; you can find a full transcript here, as well as a few excerpts below:

“Running for office has been a calling, truly a calling. My father had this saying—when something important needed to be done, he would say, “Ahora es cuando,” which means it’s time now… I love the communities I work with. I love my planet. I love my democracy. I love my familias. And we all do—we all share this incredible love for things like that, for our communities, our people, our planet. And everything we loved was under attack.” —Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez

“A couple things became apparent to me: One was that our elected officials seem to have lost their line of sight to the people of this district. And one of the big issues was health care. And there are 120,000 people in this district without health insurance, which gives people basic access to a doctor… Georgia did not expand Medicaid, something that I know from a fiscal standpoint meant that the state was returning to the federal government between $2.2 and $3 billion a year, that could have gone a long way to helping ensure that everybody had insurance coverage and access to a doctor.” —Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux

“At the end of the day, our Rep. was so out of alignment and so ridiculously averse to women’s rights. It was just so tangible that I always say that I had to run. Not that necessarily I wanted to, I had to run. Someone had to stand up to this guy and someone had to stand up to the Chicago machine. And honestly—it only could be a mom. It literally could only be a mom because throughout my career, when I have a very thorny, complex problem that is stressful and requires a lot of attention, I call a busy mom, because they are the ones that are best at that.” —Rep. Marie Newman

“There’s not the female coalition, if you will, that there was in the 1970s, when Republican and Democratic women worked together on a lot of issues, including the attempt to pass the ERA… But they didn’t have any power in the ’70s. They had no gavels. They weren’t on any good committees, they worked more across party lines — that changed in the ’80s with the Gingrich Revolution, as the Republicans became more conservative and the number of Democratic women really exponentially outpaced them.” —Jennifer Steinhauer

Meet the Host of On the Issues: Dr. Michele Goodwin is a frequent contributor to Ms. magazine and on She is a Chancellor’s Professor at the University of California, Irvine and also serves on the executive committee and national board of the ACLU. Dr. Goodwin is a prolific author and an elected member of the American Law Institute, as well as an elected Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and the Hastings Center. Her most recent book, Policing The Womb: Invisible Women and The Criminalization of Motherhood, is described as a “must read.”

About Ms. Magazine: Co-founded by Gloria Steinem in 1972 and published by the Feminist Majority Foundation since 2001, Ms. magazine has been a trusted, popular source for feminist news and information in print and online for nearly 50 years. Ms.’s time-honored traditions of an emphasis on in-depth investigative reporting and feminist political analysis have never been more relevant, bringing a new generation of writers and readers together to create the feminism of the future.


If you would like more information on the On the Issues with Michele Goodwin podcast, or to schedule an interview with Host Michele Goodwin or Executive Producer & Ms. Executive Editor Katherine Spillar, please email

Launched in 1971, Ms. is the most trusted, popular source for feminist news and information in print and online with a tradition of in-depth investigative reporting and feminist political analysis. Ms. is wholly owned and published by the Feminist Majority Foundation.