Prof. Christina Wolbrecht, Director of the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy, University of Notre Dame says the commitment of African-American women voters to electoral participation in the United States is “very high.’’
Wolbrecht, a professor of Political Science rated the commitment of black women voters high while briefing selected journalists at a webinar organised by the U.S. Department of State – Bureau of Global Public Affairs on Wednesday.
Wolbrecht said that since 1980, women as a group have participated in elections at a higher rate than men do.
“There are simply more women of voting age in the United States, due mostly to the fact that women have longer lifespans, at least in the U.S.
“One of the themes, or one of the takeaways I am hoping that you will get from my presentation, is that we have to be extremely careful when we talk about women as a group.
“Because it turns out women are just as diverse in their identities and their interests as men are. We see important differences, and I will be talking more about those among different groups of women.
“The first thing I want to point out is that every racial group, women are more likely to turn out than men, that is a consistent finding.
“On the other hand, there are, of course, important differences between different groups of women and men; different racial groups, I should say.
“What I want to point out, however, is that the highest turnout that we see, by dividing up the population this way, is among white women and black women.
“Black women’s turnout has become especially high in recent elections; one of the reasons you are hearing a lot; there are many reasons why you should; about black women voters is their commitment to electoral participation is particularly high,’’ she said.
In her remarks, Ms Tierra Stewart, the National Fellowship Programme Director of IGNITE, a nonpartisan organisation stressed the need to provide opportunity for young people to participate in government.
NAN reports that lGNITE leads a movement of young women interested to become political leaders and provides them with networks to position them for electoral candidacy.
“And knowing that if we do not provide opportunities for our youth, they will fall into something.
“And if we really wanted to support our youth in our growth, we should give them ideas about their way of life and allocate resources that is going to be conducive to growth, not destruction.
“That is when I turned into working directly and trying to get people in positions of power, in order to impact policy that can change the way of life,’’ she said.