Snow Queens


Bi-weekly Brief:
 February 12, 2016
Brought to you by Women's Campaign Fund 

The snow queens
After a big blizzard hit DC a couple weeks ago, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski noticed something different and “genuinely fabulous” about the floor of the Senate: "As we convene this morning, you look around the chamber, the presiding officer is female. All of our parliamentarians are female. Our floor managers are female. All of our pages are female.” She added that “Perhaps it just speaks to the hardiness of women." Help WCF make every day look more like a snow day in Congress -- donate today.

A modesty proposal
After Kansas state Sen. Mitch Holmes included a rule in his committee’s dress code that singled out women for “inappropriate” attire, ladies on both sides of the aisle joined together in outrage. “Oh, for crying out loud, what century is this?” asked Sen. Laura Kelly, a Democrat; while Holmes’ female Republican colleagues asked who was going to define “low cut” and said the rule would discourage women from testifying. Rep. Anne Kuether pointed out that meanwhile the state has spent over $1 million defending unconstitutional restrictions on women’s access to health care. Well I know what’s not the matter with Kansas: the women in the state legislature.

New rules that rule
On the seventh anniversary of the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the White House announced new rules requiring big companies to report what workers are paid, broken down by race, gender, and ethnicity. This will (1) help companies fix big pay gaps on their own, and (2) help the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission launch investigations into the discriminatory practices of those that don’t. Because what you don’t know can hurt you… and leave you with 21% less pay.

Dream phone (numbers)
Ever wonder why whenever you go to a conference, the participants in panel discussions are mostly dudes? Or why experts interviewed by the media are also disproportionately male? Maybe the organizers of these things just don’t know how to get in touch with any lady experts, so to help them out (and remind them that #WomenAlsoKnowStuff), there’s now a directory of female scholars in every political science-related field you can imagine. Heck, I want to call some of them just to chat.

Shall we dance?
If anyone knows how grueling a presidential campaign can be, it’s Barack Obama. But in a recent interview, the POTUS admitted that because of society’s expectations on women, his female opponent had an even tougher job. On his 2008 election battle with Hillary Clinton, he said: “We had as competitive and lengthy and expensive and tough primary fight as there has been in modern American politics, and she had to do everything that I had to do, except, like Ginger Rogers, backwards in heels.”

A worthy goooooooooooooooal!
Despite women’s soccer’s growing popularity, there’s still a serious lack of investment from FIFA, the organization that oversees the world’s most popular sport. Might have something to do with the fact that just 1% of FIFA’s Congress is women, and only one woman sits on its 25-member executive committee. Meet Moya Dodd, the woman who’s fighting to change the ugly gender discrimination behind the beautiful game.

Rhode Island passed a paid family leave law in 2013. You will believe what happened next.
Here’s a contender for least surprising news this month. Yet another report has come to the exact same conclusion as other past research: paid family leave laws don’t crush business, but they are good for families and children’s health. Huh, next they’ll tell us that Donald Trump said something sexist recently.

Bey slay
If you want to see what did get crushed lately, watch the video of Beyoncé absolutely crushing the Superbowl halftime show. Then check out Jessica Williams crushing it on The Daily Show, with her response to pundits who criticized Bey for daring to make a political statement with her performance. I’m not sure which I’m crushing on harder right now.

Princess among men
Disney heroines have come a long way since Sleeping Beauty literally slept through half the movie waiting for a man to save her, but researchers noticed a problem recently: even in Disney “princess” movies, men still do most of the talking. The reason is that aside from the main heroine, there just aren’t many other female characters. So Disney, maybe take a hint from Ariel, and make more women “Part of Your World”.



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