Photo via BuzzFeed.
Yesterday, was kind of an important day in U.S. politics. In the aftermath of the passing of a fiscal cliff bill, the 112th Congress commenced around 11:00 am yesterday. Traditionally, they would end the session before the Christmas holidays, but since our country was on the brink of financial disaster, they put in some overtime.
But, all is well – the 113th Congress held it’s official opening ceremony yesterday at noon, and of course, I watched it most of it streaming live as I worked (multi-tasking at it’s best!). It was the traditional proceedigs – the swearing in of the newly elected and re-elected U.S. Representatives, election and swearing in of the speaker (John Boehner), nomination and confirmation of each party’s House leadership and finally a whole lot of amendments and suggestions on how the 113th Congress should operate.
I think my favorite part though, was watching the women of the Democratic party take their class photo. The House of Representatives, as of January 3, has 80 women. Of them, 61 are Democrats. Plus, there are 20 women elected to the Senate – Those are record numbers for the U.S. Congress! USA Today publishe a cool interactive graphic of women in Congress over the years – check it out! Of the nearly 2,000 senators in the history of Congress, only 44 have been female. We’re making progress, but women still have a long way to go to be truly represenative of the U.S. population in our country’s leadership!
I particularly enjoyed seeing all the color and diversity that they brought to the floor – their hot pink and red suits and even fabulous hair accessories stood out in a sea of black suits. It sounds shallow, I know, but I think I hope that it is representative of their work in this session of Congress. You can read some of their bios here or read the first hand recollections of their swearing in yesteday. Reading their swearing-in accounts and watching some of it live on C-Span literally gave me the chills – it was absolutely amazing.
Who knows, maybe, God willing that will be me someday? :)
Check out more photos here!
Watch Diane Sawyer sit down and chat with twenty of the female Congresswomen.