Pelosi: Celebrate Today, Vote in Every Election

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Nancy PelosiWASHINGTON–There is nothing more wholesome than the participation of women in the political process. When women gain in numbers in elected representation, when more women engage in the political process, women gain in influence–and that means greater advancement for America’s women and families.

As we mark the 90th anniversary of a woman’s right to vote–and Equality Day–we should be celebrating this right to vote. While you may not be casting votes in Congress, you can cast a vote in national, state and local elections. And the more women that participate, the more progress for many people in our country.

In the 111th Congress, we have seen gains for U.S. women. One needs to look no further than the new health care reform law, which will take its place in the history books next to Social Security and Medicare. It is delivering real change for American families.

With this legislation, we will insure 32 million more people, end insurance company discrimination based on pre-existing conditions and close the Medicare "donut hole"–a gap in coverage for the prescription drug benefit–for seniors. In addition to creating more than 4 million jobs, this new law is particularly significant for women and children as it ends higher insurance rates based on gender and includes maternity care as an essential service.

Now being a woman is no longer a pre-existing medical condition!

In short, the law establishes that health care for all Americans is a right, not a privilege. As the law is implemented, the new reforms will provide great comfort to women, often the decision-makers in family health care.

A First in Our Nation’s History

Women are also making up a greater percentage of the work force. For the first time in our nation’s history, women make up half of all U.S. workers, according to "The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Changes Everything," released in 2009. Mothers are now the primary breadwinners or co-breadwinners in two-thirds of American families.

In these challenging economic times, we must continue to create good paying jobs here in the United States. To that end, this Congress passed a recovery package that has begun to turn our economy around, saving or creating 3.6 million jobs. We are enacting President Obama’s economic blueprint for the future, which will reduce the deficit, lower taxes for the middle class and create jobs around three pillars: investments in education and innovation, investments in energy security and investments in health care.

We need to stay focused on job creation and continue to empower the small business owners–many of whom are women–on Main Street. We also need to create opportunities for our daughters to become the innovators and entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

Fighting for Fairness and Equality

Nancy PelosiWe continue to fight for fairness and equality for America’s working women, which is even more critical now as many families find themselves relying solely on the mother’s paycheck. The Lilly Ledbetter law, the first bill President Obama signed when he took office, gives women the tools to fight pay discrimination in the workplace.

But we still have not achieved equal pay. Women earn 77 cents to every dollar earned by a man. The House passed Rep. Rosa DeLauro’s, D-Conn., Paycheck Fairness Act to right this injustice and we must urge the Senate to do the same.

Social Security which matters most to women, will always be protected. We will fight against continued efforts to privatize this bedrock promise to America’s seniors.

It has long been clear that the missing link for women at all income levels to succeed in their jobs is the availability of quality, affordable child care. We must guarantee an economy and a society that supports the motto: "families earning, children learning."

We stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us. Let us remember the fierce determination of the women who won for us the right to vote, the right to engage in the political process. Let us honor their sacrifice by engaging in the political process and embracing your right to vote.

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Nancy Pelosi is the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. For more information, please visit

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One thought on “Pelosi: Celebrate Today, Vote in Every Election

  1. Thanks to WomenE-News for this report.
    Met Speaker Pelosi at the Realizing the Dream Report to the Congressional Out of Poverty Congressional Caucus in 2007 with Martin Luther King III. Pelosi spoke movingly about the inspiration Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was to her as a young woman and posed for me to take photos of her with Martin III. But she refused my gift of a handknit shawl claiming it was against House Rules for her to accepts gifts. I told her I was ndn and it was against my culture and nature to go anywhere without making and giving gifts.
    When I researched how House Speaker Pelosi takes big bucks from corporations and lobbyists, and saw little or no action in fulfilling the promises to alleviate poverty she promised Martin, RTD and the Out of Poverty Caucus, and how the numbers of people living below the poverty line and just above it have increased during Pelosi’s tenure with over 40 million families living in poverty in summer 2010 with the numbers growing daily under the Obama administration. I saw Pelosi is a consummate politician and her words and promises are just like the U.S. Goverments’ always were in treaties with American Indians,treatment of African Americans, farmers, small business owners, families, youth and the poor (the largest number of whom are white)-empty and false.
    Women of the World and Men too-Stop voting in elections controlled by lobbyists, politicos and multinational corporations with no loyalty to anything but power and greed and take control of your own destiny by regaining sovereignty over your food, energy production and lives and build a sustainable future for your children and all the children of the world to the 7th Generation and beyond. Peace, Freedom and Justice Everwhere for Everyone-Women,Men and Children, Earth, Air and Water and all our relations.