When it comes to politics, sometimes we agree, sometimes we don't. The same can be said of motherhood. Some of us believe in strollers, others in slings. Some of us co-sleep and some of us use cribs. But in the end, we are all bonded by motherhood. It's a unifying force that, even when we totally disagree politically, can bring us to some form of unity.
Moms get it. We know. And on Mother's Day, what better way to celebrate all the moms who are making a difference in our country (agree or not) than with a list of the 8 Most Powerful Political Moms?
So, here they are in all their glory. Like them or not, these are the women who are taking policies out of the domestic sphere and making decisions that affect mothers everywhere.
The 8 Most Powerful Political Moms:
- Barbara Boxer: Boxer is the junior US Senator from California who won a tough re-election campaign last fall after being challenged by Carly Fiorina. She is the Chief Deputy Whip of the Democratic Majority. Boxer has two children and became involved in politics largely because the Vietnam War was happening just as her children were born and she was actively involved in protesting it. After Robert Kennedy was assassinated, she was pulled from the private sphere to fight for her own children, as well as everyone else's.
- Sarah Palin: Palin started her political career when she was elected to be the mayor of Wasilla, Alaska. Next she was the youngest person and the first woman elected Governor of Alaska, an office she held for nearly three years. She was the Republican Party nominee for Vice President, becoming the first Alaskan on the national ticket of a major party. She also has five children ranging in age from their early 20s to toddlerhood and is a grandmother of one. Motherhood is a huge part of her persona and she is one of the famous "Mama Grizzlies," a group of political women who view motherhood as a driving force behind their beliefs.
- Michelle Obama: She may be "just" the wife of the President, but our First Lady is a highly successful lawyer and power broker in her own right. She has degrees from Princeton and Harvard Law School and is a former Chicago city administrator and community outreach worker as well as the mother of two girls, Sasha and Malia Obama. In the White House, she has used her position to combat childhood obesity and push for better nutrition and health education.
- Christine Gregoire: She is the second female governor of Washington and was elected in 2004. She also has two daughters and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003. Healthcare is a major cause for her because of it.
- Nancy Pelosi: As a member of Congress, Pelosi has made a name for herself as a two-term Speaker of the House whose role put her second in line to the presidency if something were to happen. She was the first woman in that office and is still the highest-ranking female politician in American history. Currently she is Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives. She is also a mother of five whose daughter is now a documentary filmmaker focusing on political campaigns.
- Michele Bachmann: Bachmann is a member of the United States House of Representatives for Minnesota and has been mentioned as a potential 2012 presidential candidate. She is the first Republican woman to represent the state in Congress. She and her husband have five children together and have fostered another 23 children. A major focus of her political career has been education and another has been abortion, both issues deeply tied to her own role as a mom.
- Nikki Haley: Haley is the Republican Governor of South Carolina and the first Indian-American to serve in that role. She is also a mom of two, a boy and a girl.
- Hillary Clinton: The former first lady and mom to Chelsea Clinton has come a long way since her days in the White House. Currently, she is the United States Secretary of State, but she was a United States Senator for New York from 2001 to 2009. She once told Marie Claire a bit about what it was like to be a working mom:
Like every working mother, there's guilt involved in deciding how you're going to balance family and work. I tried to put as much time into taking care of Chelsea myself as I could. Bill and I alternated reading to her every night ... I think it's a false trade-off to say quality time versus quantity -- you have to have both. So if you have long work hours like I did, how do you get rid of things in your life you don't need in order to put that extra time into your children?
Who do you think is the most powerful political mama?
Image via marcn/Flickr