The Democratic Women’s Alliance’s (DWA) primary focus is to grow and engage the number of women involved in the party at all levels from those who want to make educated decisions at the ballot box to women who decide to run for office.
The DWA is the latest chapter in the Democratic Party’s long commitment to activating more women. It serves as the Democratic Party’s formal coalition of organizations and leaders who have made it their mission to amplify women’s voices in politics. These coalition partners share the common goal to advance the issues and concerns important to women in the body politic and to mobilize women activists, engage women voters and train future Democratic political leaders. The Democratic Women’s Alliance was first conceived during the 2012 Presidential campaign. It has since been formalized and in the last few months, the DWA has enacted partnerships with the DNC Women’s Caucus, the Women’s Leadership Forum (WLF) and other DNC entities, and outside allied groups to accomplish strategic objectives.
During the 2012 election cycle, there was a systematic effort on the part of the Republican Party to strip women of the legal rights they’d fought for and earned, or to deny them rights that had been settled generations ago. From reproductive rights to economic security to quality health care, women’s rights were front and center in 2012; in fact, they were under attack.
There are 158 million women living in the US. They represent 47% the American labor force and 67% of women reported that they are registered to vote. In 2012, more women cast a vote than men and 56% voted for Barack Obama — contributing to the largest gender gap recorded in U.S. history.
Women are engaging more and more in the political process whether they are candidates for office or educating themselves about the best candidate to represent them in Washington. More women are following politics through social media and other outlets than any other group. Women are the primary decision makers in many households when it comes to issues such as education, healthcare and family budget. And when women compare the two party platforms, Democrats must make it clear that the natural home for women is the Democratic Party. By building on a successful foundation led by the 2012 women’s working group, we will continue making gains in 2014, 2016, and beyond for all Americans.
The DNC is uniquely positioned to operate the Democratic Women’s Alliance through the national party’s established state and local infrastructure and networks. The DWA brings in additional allies in the progressive community and collaborates with existing organizations that are already doing fantastic work to advance women in politics.
The DNC, through the Association of State Democratic Chairs and the State Party Partnership, has already invested in strategic, institutional resources to build a network among all 50 states to engage their grassroots supporters and state leaders to make sure women nationwide are actively engaged.
The Democratic Women’s Alliance will be a central hub to mobilize, engage, and train Democratic women in politics. Looking forward, we know we have tough elections ahead, and the Alliance will be crucial in helping us win. Under the leadership of Interim DNC Chair Donna Brazile, the Democratic Women’s Alliance will build on our strong support from women voters to accomplish strategic objectives that will ensure electoral success in 2014 and 2016, and promote women's leadership within the Democratic Party.
The Democratic Women’s Alliance will work with women in all 50 states through state parties to engage our network of grassroots supporters to make sure women nationwide are ready and equipped to actively support Democratic values and help elect Democrats up and down the ballot. As we gear up for the 2014 midterm elections, the Democratic Women’s Alliance will focus on three central goals: mobilizing, engaging, and training women.
Women represent a strong base a support for the Democratic Party, but we must continue to expand this base by reaching out to more women through targeted, data driven initiatives. The Alliance will invest in research, polling and analysis centered on women voters and the issues they care about most.
Locating new Democratic women and bringing them into the political process is only the beginning. The Alliance will ensure that this network of supporters is armed with the information they need to successfully fight for the causes they care about.
The Democratic Women’s Alliance will provide training opportunities to women in all 50 states, and provide an infrastructure for continued training at the community level through the establishment of neighborhood teams, town hall meetings and round tables. The DWA will also work to recruit more Democratic female leaders who can actively lead our state parties, become party delegates, and run for elected office.