Women Rock. And, they’re rocking the vote from the ground game strategy to the ballot box.
The 2012 election produced historic, ceiling-breaking victories for women serving in the nation’s capital. According to Rutger’s Center for American Women and Politics, a record-breaking 20 women will serve in the U.S. Senate (16 Democrats and 4 Republicans) and 78 in the U.S. House (58 democrats and 20 Republicans).
In 2013, some 1,770 women will occupy seats in state legislatures across the country. And while those numbers may sound impressive, some states, including Kentucky, suffer a steep gender gap in electoral politics.
In Kentucky, we all know not a single woman is among our federal delegation. When it comes to the state legislature, 7 women (including the recent special election victory of former state Representative Sara Beth Gregory) in the 38-member state Senate and 20 women in the 100-member state House will descend on Frankfort in about 10 days to do the people’s business. The Center for American Women and Politics ranks Kentucky 38th among state legislatures for the proportion of women to men.
There’s a growing list of organizations and individuals determined to have more women take the oath of office in Kentucky, and more women are also working behind the scenes of political campaigns. The latter applies to Keidra King, a Louisville native who was inspired to wade into Democratic political strategy after working as a community organizer in Cincinnati in 2001 while a student at Northern Kentucky University.
Since that time, King has worked on Capitol Hill in the office of Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth of Louisville; she was a field director for the Obama for America campaign in 2008; and was the state director in Kentucky for President Obama’s second-term campaign. Moreover, she can add election victories in Ohio and South Carolina to her street creds.
Keidra now works for Louisville Metro City Council and was recently named Kentucky state coordinator for the Presidential Inaugural committee.
This weekend on Connections, I talk with Keidra about working the ground game and GOTV efforts, the unpopularity of President Obama in Kentucky and how women and minorities are faring in electoral politics and policy decisions.
Tune in today at 5pm on KET 2 and Sunday at 1:30pm on KET to watch our entire conversation.