Sunday, June 5, 2011

What is 50/50 by 2020?

Women typically come to politics to solve a problem. They come as moms, nurses, teachers, lawyers, and lay-leaders. They often lack the monied and influential networks that men develop during their careers. Members of the NWPC LA-Westside Caucus come together to provide that candidate support and level the playing field.

50/50 by 2020: It’s an ambitious goal but one we are committed to achieving, and we need your help! Today women make up just 17% of the U.S. Congress, and only 24% of statewide elected offices are held by women. Why does it matter? According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, more women in leadership, regardless of party affiliation, will fundamentally shift the agenda, resulting in more women and family friendly policies. A diverse legislature is a smarter, stronger, more just governing body.

The concept 50% women in government by the year 2020 is not about us versus them; it is about sharing responsibility, sharing leadership and creating a truly representational government. Women must be willing to assume political power and responsibility, not just as informed voters and community activists, but as candidates for local, state and federal office; as legislators and members of the judiciary, as high level appointees — and as chief executives.

The National Women’s Political Caucus will exist as long as the cultural environment continues to give men an advantage over women who want to serve in the public sector. We have a network, we have a plan, and we will continue to recruit, train and support good women until we reach gender parity at all levels of government.

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