Skip to main content

America is ready for Madam President

By Stephanie Schriock, Special to CNN
updated 10:10 AM EDT, Thu May 2, 2013
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, pictured in October 2012, has become one of the most powerful people in Washington. Here's a look at her life and career through the years: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, pictured in October 2012, has become one of the most powerful people in Washington. Here's a look at her life and career through the years:
HIDE CAPTION
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
Hillary Clinton's career in the spotlight
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Stephanie Schriock: In 2012, voters elected more women to Congress than ever before
  • Schriock: Despite progress, there is still a "men only" sign on the door to the Oval Office
  • She says EMILY's List is launching a campaign to put a woman in the White House
  • Schriock: If Hillary Clinton decides not to run, we still many women leaders to choose from

Editor's note: Stephanie Schriock is the president of EMILY's List, an organization dedicated to electing pro-choice Democratic women to office.

(CNN) -- In 2012 the American people sent a message. They elected more women than ever to Congress, shattering glass ceilings across the nation and making it clear that this is a country that is ready for women's leadership.

It's happening because voters know female leaders have the right priorities. They've fought for policies like the Violence Against Women Act and equal pay for equal work. Female leaders are the reason we have laws that ended gender discrimination in education.

But even though we know women's leadership has helped create so much progress, there is still a "men only" sign on the door to the Oval Office.

Stephanie Schriock
Stephanie Schriock

Across the country, Americans know it's time to change that. It's time to capitalize on the demand for women's leadership, harness the energy and ignite a movement that will put a woman in the White House.

2016 poll: If Clinton doesn't run, then who?

Today, EMILY's List is launching a campaign to make that a reality. Our community of 2 million women and men across the country has worked to elect women to offices up and down the ballot.

In my personal journey, I know how difficult it is to put women in leadership roles. The first campaign I managed was my own. I ran many times and lost many times when I ran for class president in my high school. In my junior year, I decided that I should run for student body president, because it wasn't just my class voting but the entire school. I put together a campaign plan that targeted only the freshmen and sophomore votes. I even got the younger sister of my opponent to join my campaign. I won.

In the process, I learned my first campaign lesson: Never underestimate the power of women. There's a sister, and there's sisterhood.

Now, I get to see that sisterhood at work every day. In the past 28 years EMILY's List has become the nation's largest resource for women in politics, and in that time we've done extensive research on women's leadership and women's priorities.

Our most recent polling, conducted on likely 2016 voters in battleground states, proves without a doubt that the American people are ready for a female chief executive.

Panel: Hillary is the inevitable nominee
Hillary Clinton back in the public eye
Hillary Clinton returns to spotlight

Ninety percent of the people we polled say they would vote for a woman for president and 75% say a female president would be a good thing for the country. Of those surveyed, more thought a female president than a male president would be likely to put families ahead of politics and end partisan bickering. That's something we've known about women since we started helping them run for office in the 1980s.

Kissinger gives a bit of a wink to idea of Clinton in 2016

These female leaders have fought -- and fought hard -- to take a place at the table and make laws that improve the lives of American women and families. The results are undeniable. Because of this we know, our community knows, and countless Americans across the country know, that now is the time for a woman to be at the head of the table.

So who will it be? There's one name on all our minds: Hillary Clinton. Voters across the country are excited about her possible run. But if she decides not to run, we still have a deep bench of incredible female leaders to choose from.

From Cabinet secretaries and senators to the many female governors we'll have after 2014; there are numerous women who are ready to take on the challenge of leading our nation.

Long after we've elected the first female president, we're going to keep electing even more American women, building a pipeline of state legislators and members of Congress, mayors and governors and senators, who will work their way up the ranks and be the second and 10th female presidents.

We are standing on the edge of history. We are standing on the shoulders of the senators and suffragettes, civil rights activists and founding mothers, who have been the backbone of this great country. It's time for us to take the next step and make electing a female president part of our national story.

When a woman runs for president, she will hear this one thing loud and clear from millions of women and men: We stand with you -- and we believe you can win.

America is ready to elect its first Madam President.

Follow us on Twitter @CNNOpinion.

Join us on Facebook/CNNOpinion.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephanie Schriock.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 4:47 PM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Jim Bell says NASA's latest discovery support the notion that habitable worlds are probably common in the galaxy.
updated 2:17 PM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Jay Parini says even the Gospels skip the actual Resurrection and are sketchy on the appearances that followed.
updated 1:52 PM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Graham Allison says if an unchecked and emboldened Russia foments conflict in a nation like Latvia, a NATO member, the West would have to defend it.
updated 9:11 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
John Sutter: Bad news, guys -- the pangolin we adopted is missing.
updated 1:10 PM EDT, Sat April 19, 2014
Ben Wildavsky says we need a better way to determine whether colleges are turning out graduates with superior education and abilities.
updated 6:26 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Charles Maclin, program manager working on the search and recovery of Malaysia Flight 370, explains how it works.
updated 8:50 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Jill Koyama says Michael Bloomberg is right to tackle gun violence, but we need to go beyond piecemeal state legislation.
updated 2:45 PM EDT, Thu April 17, 2014
Michael Bloomberg and Shannon Watts say Americans are ready for sensible gun laws, but politicians are cowed by the NRA. Everytown for Gun Safety will prove the NRA is not that powerful.
updated 9:28 AM EDT, Thu April 17, 2014
Ruben Navarrette says Steve Israel is right: Some Republicans encourage anti-Latino prejudice. But that kind of bias is not limited to the GOP.
updated 7:23 PM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Peggy Drexler counts the ways Phyllis Schlafly's argument that lower pay for women helps them nab a husband is ridiculous.
updated 12:42 PM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Rick McGahey says Rep. Paul Ryan is signaling his presidential ambitions by appealing to hard core Republican values
updated 11:39 AM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Paul Saffo says current Google Glasses are doomed to become eBay collectibles, but they are only the leading edge of a surge in wearable tech that will change our lives
updated 2:49 PM EDT, Tue April 15, 2014
Kathleen Blee says the KKK and white power or neo-Nazi groups give haters the purpose and urgency to use violence.
updated 7:56 AM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse and Rep. Henry Waxman say read deep, and you'll see the federal Keystone pipeline report spells out the pipeline is bad news
updated 7:53 AM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Frida Ghitis says President Obama needs to stop making empty threats against Russia and consider other options
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT