Monday, April 07, 2014

From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

The Parti Quebecois loss tonight shows just how hard it is for women politicians to actually have a chance in government. 

Pauline Marois will be the 3rd female Premier gone this year, leaving only two; Christy Clark in BC and Kathleen Wynn in Ontario.

Why Marois's loss tonight is bad for women is not because of her exit but because of her entrance. And that is, she was doomed from the start.

Successful political parties have a habit in Canada of not selecting women leaders. It's only when those parties are in desperation do they resort to gender equality, as if it's some last ditch effort to show the party is different. This was the case for every recent female Premier.

But the trend goes back even further when you consider Canada's first female Premier BC's Rita Johnson and our first female Prime Minister Kim Campbell. These women leaders and almost all others were only given the reins when their party was on the verge of historic defeat. 

The five female Premiers that started this year were elected to lead failing political parties, they didn't have a chance. Each party that elected them was facing declining and dismal polling numbers. The PQ were in such trouble in 2007 that no one else besides Marois would even take the leadership. 

As Canada loses another female Premier tonight, it should be obvious that our country has a lot of work to do to improve gender equality in politics.

No comments: