The Emerge Program is the premier training program for Democratic women. We inspire women to run and we hone their skills to win. Our goal is clear: to increase the number of Democratic women in public office.
But why? The facts speak volumes:
- seventy-one in the world: that's where the United States ranks for women in elected office, behind Mexico, China and Pakistan;
- women make up just 19% of the U.S. Congress;
- only six states currently have female Governors; and
- only thirteen states currently have female Lieutenant Governors.
Although there has been progress, there is still a large disparity when it comes to women in positions of political power. We can no longer sit back and allow this to continue. In order to solve this imperative problem, we need to identify why this is happening and take action to force change.
One might think that the public does not want to vote a woman into political power. However, leading theorists believe women simply are not running for office.
Feminist icon Gloria Feldt suggests:
"We're at unique place in history-where we've blown open the glass ceiling but not yet swept away all the treacherous shards. Though we can find data to support many explanations about why we aren't at parity in elected office and boardrooms, we simply no longer have compelling justifications not to be taking responsibility to get ourselves there."
Why not you?
A reason is not an excuse. We all know there are plenty of reasons to avoid running for public office. But it is up to YOU to lead the way and start taking real steps towards progress. A pool of highly qualified Democratic candidates is being left untapped. Too often, women do not see themselves running for office - they don't think they are experienced enough or they just don't know where to start.
The Emerge California Program is the essential step for Democratic women who have a vision of running for public office, but do not necessarily know where to start.