Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Lipstick LobbyList 1.6.11

A New Year.  A new state legislative session.  A new Congress.  A new Lipstick LobbyList.

On the state side:

A shout out to State Senator Sonia Chang-Díaz for being picked for the Rodel Fellowship at the Aspen Institute.

Today, the newly re-elected State Senate President Therese Murray becomes the first woman in Massachusetts history to swear in the governor.  Baby steps....

Longtime Herald sports columnist Steve Buckley came out today in his column
I’ve put this off long enough. I haven’t been fair to my family, my friends or my co-workers. And I certainly haven’t been fair to myself: For too many years I’ve been on the sidelines of Boston’s gay community but not in the game...
Onto national news:

Congress has a new Speaker of the House.  As yet another sign of her admirable - and in this case, humble - leadership style, I loved Nancy Pelosi's tweet on Tuesday:
@Nancy Pelosi I'm now @NancyPelosi - 2 characters shorter than @SpeakerPelosi. RTers rejoice!
An interesting article in today's NYT about Speaker Boehner's wife, Debbie Boehner. I have to admit, I found myself really liking her.  She's 62.  She's planning to keep her career in Ohio as a real estate agent, versus moving to DC to simply support her husband's career.  And I particularly related to her working part time at a Garden Center to get the discount for her daughter's wedding flowers.  I do miss the Midwestern creative thriftiness and work ethic.

Lisa Belkin in the Motherlode blog analyzes New Jersey's governor Chris Christie's emergency snow response, who was absent from the state for a planned family vacation.   
His reasoning: that he had “made a promise to my children that at the end of my first year of governor that I was going to take them to Disney World. My first and most important responsibility, in my view, is as a husband and a father.”

[W]hat if Christopher had been Christine? Lost in the debate over whether or not the state could function with the governor out of town is the striking fact that a woman would never have used the words that this man did. Women in the workplace still go out of their way to hide their families — still fibbing and saying that they themselves are sick when their child has the flu — for fear of being dismissed as “mere moms.”

I can not imagine a woman announcing that her role of “wife and mother” comes before her role as governor. Can you? And is Christie’s embracing of his “paternal side” a kind of progress for parents or just a reminder that the rules are still different for men?

1 comment:

erikasotolamb said...

I agree that the double-standards between what women and men can say about their priorities -- especially when it comes to their careers -- is daunting.

A female governor could never have said what Christie did. Yet, I appreciate that he kept it real.

I am also hopeful that Christie's words will empower more men to say that their families are important... so that it won't be such a career-killer for women to do it too.

That will probably take a long time but it has to start somewhere!