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Student demonstrators in the rainy weather protesting outside of Coffman Memorial Union on Tuesday.
Photos from April 23 protests
Published April 23, 2024

Clinton loss has a surprising outcome

Women are taking matters into their own hands.

When the last of the battleground states were called on election night, I couldn’t believe that our first viable attempt at electing a woman president had failed in the face of such a hopelessly under-qualified man. Even with all of her experience, Clinton still seemed unfit for Commander-in-Chief in the eyes of the American people. Now, a month after the election, there have been some surprising results that have given me hope for future elections.

Various news outlets have reported that women are channeling their anger and frustration over the 2016 election and running for lower-level offices. Because women are underrepresented in all levels of government, I believe these people have realized something that I’ve always known is true: If we want the general American populace to see women as viable candidates for the highest office in the U.S., we need to show them we are more than capable of political prowess. To do that, we need to run for office in droves.

We need to flood every available branch, every small-town government or inner-city school board. No position is too small when women face crushing defeat after 45 male presidents and centuries of male-dominated politics. The fact that mothers have to explain to their daughters why Hillary Clinton lost to Donald Trump, and why their daughters still don’t have a person that looks like them in the oval office, especially in 2016, is mind-boggling to me.

If there’s anything good that can come out of this election, it is that there is still hope for the people Donald Trump has disrespected. The recent election of Rep. Ilhan Omar — a Somali-American woman who wears a hijab and fights for equality in every sense of the word — to the Minnesota House of Representatives is something that we should be immensely proud of. And Omar isn’t alone. Three other women of color have been elected to the state Legislature. Rep. Erin Maye Quade, DFL-Apple Valley, joins Rep. Rena Moran, DFL-St. Paul, as the only black women in the Legislature. In addition, two American Indian legislators, Rep. Mary Kunesh-Podein and Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn, are also on the 2017-18 Legislature’s roster. Yet, despite the newly elected, the number of women in state government decreased by four seats. We need to change that.

The fight is not over. Yes, we may have lost the bid for a female president this round, but it’s the first of many. And I, without a doubt, will keep on fighting.

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