As a voting woman in the US…

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As a voting woman in the US, it is important that I understand how the presidential nominees for president and vice president have supported or failed to support women in the past.

Today, I tried a little experiment to see what would happen: I went to The Library of Congress THOMAS which holds all the records of what goes on in the senate. It has a search engine where you can choose key words and specific senators as co-sponsors/sponsors of bills. I chose to look at each of the candidates who is in Senate and see what bills they have sponsored or co-sponsored that include the word “woman” during the 110th congress session (most recent). Here is what I found:

Barack Obama, Democratic Presidential hopeful sponsored or co-sponsored 60 bills or resolutions that included woman as topic. These included (but were not limited to):

  • A resolution expressing the sense of the Senate that Harriett Woods will be remembered as a pioneer in women’s politics.
  • A resolution celebrating the accomplishments of title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, also known as the Patsy Takemoto Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act, and recognizing the need to continue pursuing the goal of educational opportunities for women and girls.
  • A resolution honoring the sacrifice of the members of the United States Armed Forces who have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
  • A resolution supporting legislation promoting improved health care and access to health care for women.
  • A bill to expand access to preventive health care services that help reduce unintended pregnancy, reduce abortions, and improve access to women’s health care.
  • A bill to require that health plans provide coverage for a minimum hospital stay for mastectomies, lumpectomies, and lymph node dissection for the treatment of breast cancer and coverage for secondary consultations.
  • A bill to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to prohibit discrimination in the payment of wages on account of sex, race, or national origin, and for other purposes.

His running mate, Joe Biden (the sponsor of the first Violence Against Women Act in 1993), came out of the search with 45 bills or resolutions sponsored or co-sponsored, including:

  • A resolution supporting the goals of “International Women’s Day”.
  • A resolution designating October 19, 2007, as “National Mammography Day”.
  • A resolution urging the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to overturn the sentence of the “Girl of Qatif”.
  • A resolution commemorating and acknowledging the dedication and sacrifice made by the men and women who have lost their lives while serving as law enforcement officers.
  • A bill to empower women in Afghanistan, and for other purposes.
  • A bill to amend title 39, United States Code, to extend the authority of the United States Postal Service to issue a semipostal to raise funds for breast cancer research.
  • A bill to establish a domestic violence volunteer attorney network to represent domestic violence victims.
  • A bill to combat international violence against women and girls.

Republican presidential hopeful, John McCain, has a mere 19 bills or resolutions sponsored or co-sponsored by him. These include:

  • A resolution commemorating the 25th anniversary of the construction and dedication of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
  • A resolution congratulating the University of Arizona Wildcats for winning the 2007 NCAA Division I Softball Championship.
  • A resolution congratulating the Arizona State University women’s softball team for winning the 2008 National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I Softball Championship.
  • A bill to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2008 for military activities of the Department of Defense, to prescribe military personnel strengths for fiscal year 2008, and for other purposes.
  • A bill to protect the public health by providing the Food and Drug Administration with certain authority to regulate tobacco products.
  • A bill to amend the National and Community Service Act of 1990 to expand and improve opportunities for service, and for other purposes.

The thing is– this is not a partisan study. You can repeat it yourself by going to: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/thomas

As for Sarah Palin, I think I have already made it clear that I do not support her because I believe that she and her policies would move American women back not forward. However, I think this video highlights some of the reasons I do not support her.

Please, if you are voting woman in the US, get the facts. Obama/Biden have a clear history of supporting women.

5 responses »

  1. Hi Clare,

    I know this is short notice, but I’m looking for someone to interview about human trafficking in Chile today. Are there any NGOs in particular that you would recommend I call?

    Thanks!

    Leigh

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