Women’s Rights and Democracy Are Inextricably Linked

Last fall, America was featured for the first time on a list of backsliding democracies. With inadequate progress in women’s participation in government, reproductive rights, and maternal mortality, this title may reflect recent attacks on gender equality. Amer­ica’s long­stand­ing and abysmal record on myriad gender equity mark­ers has been the true harbinger for our down­graded democracy status.

Post-Soviet States: Learning from Women Amid a Battle for Democracy and Gender Equality

We must address this moment and reflect on our democracy by examining post-Soviet state’s numerous battles for free and equal democracy. While recognizing post-Soviet culture often limits women and their agency, efforts have been made to increase female representation through the introduction of gender quotas and the adoption of international gender equality strategies on national levels. Similar initiatives have long been quickly rejected by the U.S., but with their success in challenging these nations’ dominant patriarchal motifs we should reconsider adopting similar policies in our own government.

Weekend Reading on Women’s Representation: Attacks on Women in Elected Office Ramp Up; Why’d Equal Pay Day Come a Week Early This Year?

Weekend Reading for Women’s Representation is a compilation of stories about women’s representation.

This week: the growing pro-woman movement in South Korea; read a full transcript and listen to the recordings from the inaugural Democracy Solutions Summit hosted by RepresentWomen last week; women’s rights and a healthy democracy are linked; attacks on women in elected office are becoming all too frequent; why Equal Pay Day for women fell more than a week earlier than last year; and more.

Is the Pipeline of Women Running for Office Broken?

A recent surge of women candidates gives the misleading impression that significant change is afoot. The fact is, women are still very unlikely to run or consider running for elected office, according a new study which shows the political ambition gap between men and women interested in running for office is virtually unchanged in the 20 years.

If the status quo is to change, the strategy for building a pipeline of women willing to run must change.

Our Democracy Has Problems. Women Have Solutions.

The U.S., one of the world’s oldest democracies, is now seeing a rise of antidemocratic views. But never fear. We come bearing good news. There is hope. And that hope, we believe, is the shared power and potential of mobilized women to forge a new movement for a 21st century democracy.

We hope you are inspired and encouraged by what this slate of women experts—working at all levels to reform and revitalize our democracy—have to say. And to hear more about democracy solutions and how you can get involved, join us March 8–10 from 3–5 p.m. ET for RepresentWomen’s democracy Solutions Summit, which brings together experts and leaders in election administration, voting rights and democracy reform who are working on innovative solutions that upgrade and strengthen our democracy.

For Women, the Time To Run Is Now

Start your engines, organize your campaign and submit your filing paperwork, ladies—because now is the time to run. Women are critically underrepresented in government, regardless of the level or branch.

Female candidates should be motivated, too. The last two election cycles marked record-breaking numbers of women running for office and ultimately winning. Research in political science (like the work of Jennifer Lawless and Richard Fox) shows that when women run, they win—but they do not run as often as men do. This disparity in declaring candidacies leads to the gender gap in politics. A government “of the people, by the people, for the people” must include the people who aren’t men.

Weekend Reading on Women’s Representation: 2022 Winter Olympics Are the Most Gender-Balanced Ever; Women’s Activism Threatens Authoritarian Leaders

Weekend Reading for Women’s Representation is a compilation of stories about women’s representation.

This week: Activism by women and gender minorities threatens authoritarian leaders; running for statewide executive office can be especially challenging for women; ranked-choice voting helps eliminate a split vote among women candidates; the 2022 winter Olympic games are the most gender balanced ever; how did Iceland become a model of gender parity?

Keeping Score: Democrats Demand Repeal of Global Gag Rule; Sexual Harassment Is Now a Military Code Offense; Black Voters Eager to See First Black Woman to Supreme Court

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: Mississippi abortion ban threatens future of Roe v. Wade; McDonald’s employees pursue anti-sexual harassment and discrimination training; Democrats demand permanent repeal of global gag rule; California signs Equal Pay Pledge; same-gender couples face $30,000 income gap; and more.

Let’s Make This Another Year of the Woman—This Time for Governors

Thirty years after the 1992 Year of the Woman, women are still underrepresented in governor positions, but research shows there’s hope to increase these numbers: More than a dozen women are running for governor across the country, and it’s clear that women candidates have made great progress. However, women running for governor are still held back by sexist stereotypes and double standards. 

Americans Are Entitled to Government That Truly Reflects Them. Let’s Start With the Supreme Court

When one assesses who has seats at the table—predominantly wealthy white men—it is no surprise that the issues that matter to so many everyday Americans are not lifted up.

This won’t change unless the country collectively acknowledges the literal concentration of American power among white men, decides it is not ideal, and takes affirmative steps to remedy it. The Supreme Court is a great place to start.