It felt great to fall asleep last night to the sound of rain, and even better to wake up this morning to the news that many women progressives prevailed in the primary elections for this year in Rhode Island. Nearest and dearest to me is the win for Lammis J. Vargas for Ward One City Council in Cranston. Beyond that, Moira Jayne Walsh, Marcia Ranglin-Vassell and Bridget Valverde all prevailed, despite not being nominated by the Democratic party here in Rhode Island, which tends to be heavily pro-life and pro-gun.
We wrote about these candidates here on Philanthropy Women earlier in the campaign season, when it was announced that they would not be receiving the Rhode Island Democratic party’s endorsements. Since Rhode Island is a heavily Democratic state, the endorsements from the Democratic party can go a long way to bringing in key blocks of voters. But this year, it appears that the Democratic endorsements did little to improve the chances of candidates that were seriously deficient. Further, the publicity that Nicholas Mattiello received yesterday (it was reported that Mattiello assigned State House workers to hold signs for Moira Jayne Walsh’s opponent) will go a long way to help voters decide whether they want to keep him in his seat in the next election.
We’re talking about these wins here on Philanthropy Women because there appears to be renewed efforts among gender equality philanthropy donors to recognize the political process as a key area of focus. More organizations, both 501(c)3 and 501(c)4, are being founded to help support women candidates in the process of getting elected. Organizations like Higher Heights and Emerge America are helping to diversify the pool of women who are willing to take the risk of running for office in the United States.
Congratulations to all the women who are willing to dedicate their time to service in public office. You are an inspiration to many of us, and we look forward to seeing how you will reshape America for the better!