By: Ranya Merchant (Correspondent)
Six women ran for president in 2020, and all six have dropped out, meaning America’s next president will be a male — again.
On March 5, 2020, Massachusetts state senator, Elizabeth Warren, dropped out of the running for president after a crushing loss in the democratic primaries. After Bernie Sanders’ exit from the race, Joe Biden is the presumptive Democratic candidate who will run against Donald Trump in November of this year. Although both candidates have many differing views and policies, one thing they share in common is their sex. The consistent lack of female representation in the United States government has citizens everywhere wondering if there will ever be a woman president and why it hasn’t happened yet.
“Gender in this race, you know, that is the trap question for every woman,” said Elizabeth Warren while speaking on the causes for her loss. “If you say, ‘yeah, there was sexism in this race,’ everyone says ‘whiner.’ And if you say, ‘no, there was no sexism,’ about a bazillion women think, ‘what planet do you live on?’” she added.
Former Senator Carol Moseley Braunabout, who run for president in 2004, said that there were many untrue judgments made about her, “People just start off assuming that you only care about the soft issues, you care about hearth and home, and that you can’t know anything about finance or military.”
After she lost the presidency in 2016, Hillary Clinton voiced a similar feeling, “It should not be an impossible task for more women to achieve their own goals, but we face what is a pernicious double standard that is aided and abetted by the idea of perfectionism.”
“Women are judged differently than men because their very success violates our expectations about how women are supposed to behave,” said Stanford Sociologist Marianna Cooper. “When women act competitively or assertively rather than warm and nurturing, they receive elicit pushback from others for being insufficiently feminine and too masculine. We are deeply uncomfortable with powerful women. In fact, we don’t often really like them,” she added.
Many voters have expressed that regardless of whether they like a female candidate or not, they will not vote for her because they are certain she will not win anyways.
“I would love to think that they won’t get the kind of comments that Hillary Clinton got about, ‘Why is she yelling at me?’ ‘Why doesn’t she smile more?’ I’d love to think that that’s all gone now, but I don’t believe that to be true,” said Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.
According to a 2019 poll done by Ipsos, a global marketing research company, “When asked about having a female president, 74% of Democrats and Independents were comfortable with a female president. However, “only 33% believed that their neighbors would feel the same way.”
Despite the skepticism surrounding the vote for a female president, there is an underlying desire amongst the new generation of Americans to change the status quo.
“To me, a female president marks a success in a world still plagued by gender discrimination,” said 19-year-old student, Elizabeth Rousseau.
New York Times journalist, Angie Kim, who grew up in patriarchal South Korea came to the United States with dreams of gender equality but was shocked to see a much different political climate. “The irony, of course, is South Korea had a female president, whereas America still has not had one,” she said. “What’s even more disconcerting is that South Korea isn’t the only patriarchal country to have had a female leader. Just looking at Asia and the Middle East, for example, Kyrgyzstan, Thailand, Sri Linka, India, Pakistan, [and] Bangladesh… have all had female presidents or prime ministers,” she added.
Nina Turner, former Ohio state senator, said “The path continues to be difficult, but I believe a woman will be elected president within the next 20 years. It will require the deconstruction of the gender and racial biases that permeate our culture and institutions. “