Supporting and Electing Women: Why the Majority Matters
In the United States, women are 51% of the population, and 60% of the voting
population but are vastly underrepresented in government. Women interested in
elected office often face barriers that disincentivize them from running for office.
That said, women have a proven track record of success when it comes to winning
elections and serving as legislators who show up for their constituents and pass
impactful legislation. The New Majority NYC was established as 21 in ‘21 to see if a
focused and intentional effort to achieve authentic gender representation in the NYC
Council was possible. By building political power for women and improving
contextual receptiveness in the City, the organization proved that yes, it is. In 2021,
New York City became the first major city in the United States to achieve gender
parity in its legislature with the election of 31 women, a majority women of color, to
the 51-member body.
This paper will review the landscape of women’s underrepresentation in the US, the
confidence gap, and will define ‘contextual receptiveness’ as the key to closing the
gap. It will then examine how The New Majority NYC improves contextual
receptiveness to achieve authentic representation in NYC and why electing women
matters. The conclusion emphasizes the mission is not to elect women for the sake
of gender, but for the sake of the communities they support.