For the first time ever, the California Senate is poised to achieve gender parity

California at its best can be forward-thinking and enlightened. But throughout most of our state’s history, the halls of power inside the state Capitol have been an old boys club. In the 174 years California has been a state, the Legislature has never achieved gender parity. That could change this year.

For the first time ever, the 40-member state Senate appears to be on its way to gender parity — and there’s a strong possibility women will gain a historic majority. Women also have a chance of reaching parity in the California Assembly this year, or at least coming close.

It’s taken much too long to get to this point. Women didn’t win a seat in the Legislature until 1918, when four female candidates won seats in the assembly, 68 years after California became a state. For the next half-century, only 10 more women served in the assembly, and a woman wasn’t elected to the senate until 1976.


For the full op-ed, click here.