President Donald J. Trump and Judge Brett Kavanaugh may very well have already made 2018 the ‘Year of the Woman’ – not that they were trying to…
It was the 90’s and George Bush Sr. was President. Clarence Thomas was nominated to the Supreme Court and Anita Hill swept in – and swept out – many a male congressman in her wake.
Is it happening all over again? Methinks yes.
Thursday’s potential face-off — or non-face-off — between Supreme Court n nominee Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the California professor who has accused him of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers in Maryland may have serious 2018 election consequences…
It was October 1991, when the Senate voted to confirm Justice Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court, after an all-male Senate Judiciary Committee had outraged millions of women by hurling dismissive, even hostile questions at his former subordinate, attorney Anita Hill.
All she did was testify he had sexually harassed her. There’s a whole thing with a certain hair on a coke can – but you’ll have to google that – it’s not proper here in this forum. Sorry.
Ah, screw it – it was a pubic hair.
Now you’re really going to Google it, aren’t you?
Anywhoozer – a year later, in November of 1992, the people elected more new congresswomen (24) and more new female senators (4) than in any other election in history.
It nearly doubled the number of women in the House and tripling their ranks in the Senate. That year also saw record numbers of women run for office, win their parties’ nominations and turn out to vote. It came to be known as the Year of the Woman, and widespread backlash to the Thomas-Hill controversy was viewed as the main reason why.
Is it going to happen this November and beyond?
Ironically, the woman who started this whole circus is Senator Diane Feinstein – who was one of those “Year of the Woman” women – who got elected way back when.
If it happens, historians may look back on the Ford-Kavanaugh hearings as the turning point, but they’ll be missing the point. The trend has been building since long before Kavanaugh’s nomination, and it has to do less with him than with the man who nominated him for the Supreme Court: Donald Trump.
Trump has already been generating more backlash among women than Thomas or his Republican defenders ever did.
The numbers tell the tale. More than 3 million Americans participated in women’s marches on Inauguration Day in 2017; more than a million marched one year later.
That’s a remarkable surge in activism — and it’s been mirrored by a similar surge in candidate recruitment. In 2018, 53 women sought nominations for the Senate; 476 for the House; and 61 for governor, according to the Rutgers University Center for American Women and Politics. Each total broke a previous record. And so did the number of women primary victors who are going on to the general election: 22 in the Senate, 235 in the House and 16 for governor.
It’s worth noting that most of these candidates and nominees have not been Republicans. Of the 235 women running for Congress, 183 are Democrats. That compares to 120 women on the Democratic line in 2016, the previous record — and 52 women running as Republicans this year. Fifteen of the 22 female Senate candidates are Democrats, and 12 of the 16 gubernatorial picks.
Think this is a female surge – or a Trump trump?