Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Male-dominated Election

A point raised recently on the news was that the main 3 parties all had male leaders, and women are still under-represented in Parliament, and especially in senior leadership. Certainly the debates have been a male-only affair (participants and TV hosts) At least Kirsty Wark and Emily Maitlis will be presenting the BBC Newsnight analysis afterwards.

It's not at all clear why there has not been a female leader of a major party since Margaret Thatcher (apart from Margaret Becket being acting leader of Labour after John Smith's death in 1994) Not all of the women who have occupied senior positions since have commended their case - Jacqui Smith, Harriet Harman, Theresa May. But there must be the talent out there. What is it in the system that stops it coming through?

However, it's worth noting that the Green Party of England and Wales has a female leader, Caroline Lucas. She's already an MEP and there is at least a chance of her becoming the first Green candidate to be elected to the Westminster Parliament as an MP. I suppose she is, theoretically, a contender for Prime Minister. After all, we haven't voted yet...

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