Operation Pipeline: Women in Politics

Women in politics: why more women should run for office, and how they can get political support.

By Beth Hawkins
Photograph: Photo by: iStock

At the same time, experienced politicians urge new candidates or officeholders to get comfortable with the idea that they are seeking power, or actually have it and can use it. "Be ambitious, think big,’‘ says Kamala Harris, 42, the first woman to be San Francisco DA. She learned to speak out, she has said, from her feminist mother and from her grandmother, who, in the 1940s, drove through villages in her homeland, India, with a bullhorn, urging women to use birth control. Harris, a Democrat, has just announced her run for reelection, and some supporters hope her next run will be for state attorney general.
Family also remains an issue for women on the campaign trail. In trainings, women rehearse how to handle questions about whether they’re neglecting husbands or children. But Republican Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito, 54, reelected in her West Virginia district four times, tells women to use their "natural advantage’‘ over men in this area. "We can make a more instant connection with the heart and soul issues of a family."

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