Public attention doesn’t make you qualified to run for office

Catherine Geanuracos of RH Reality Check wrote a really great piece about how women in the spotlight, putting their foot forward for political office, need to be sure they do their homework and determine whether they have the right stuff to win. It is one thing to be a darling of emerging movements where women are stepping up and making an impact. But it is often a different set of experiences that make one qualified to run for office. Don’t get me wrong, whether it is women in the US fighting the war on women, or women abroad making leaps and bounds in bringing attention to the cause of justice and equality, these are remarkable women who deserve our shout out. But it is another thing to believe that public notoriety, whether online or in the news media, is a key ingredient for running a successful bid for office. Campaigns come down to basic things..what are you doing for the voter in the district you are representing? Do they care about your profile? Have you done due diligence to show you have a vested interest in THEIR issues, not yours? When I saw a note about Pussy Riot members contemplating a run for Moscow assembly, I was reminded of this recent analysis, as they should also be. It is important that more women step up, but regardless of gender, it is more important that they win when they run and not confuse movement popularity with the support necessary from actual voters.