No, Fem-Minister

Posted by on February 10, 2014 in Featured, Politics | 18 comments

There aren’t  enough women in the Conservative Cabinet. In fact there aren’t enough women in politics full stop. There is talk of all-women shortlists and the like, but I reckon one of the real problems is we don’t consider a career in politics a practical option, or an appealing one.


I am passionate about politics. Actually I am passionate about people, and fairness, and health, and education, and world peace, and all those things come under a politicians remit. I might be a great politician, but I don’t want to be one. Why?

Firstly because I am a Mum. I just can’t quite figure out how you fit the job round a family. I doff my imaginary hat to those that do, like poor Yvette Cooper rushing the kids to school while Ed Balls bashes away at the ivories. Is it just me who would be threatening to shove that piano somewhere it really shouldn’t fit? For me though, I can’t just miss bedtime for an evening debate or work 6 day weeks between two homes a couple of hundred miles apart. Which is a shame, because Mums would add something that is lacking in Westminster – long-term thinking. I don’t just want solutions for the duration of a parliament, I want to put things in place that make life better and sustainable for the whole of my children’s lives, and their children’s.  So how about some family friendly working hours to encourage some more Mums into office.

You know what else Mums are good at? Banging heads together. If my kids shouted and brayed at each other in the way  politicians do, they would get short shrift. How I long to grab David Cameron by the ear and make him apologise for being rude to his opponents. And vice versa. In fact the whole way they behave in the chamber is frankly childish, and probably puts women off.

I wouldn’t want to be made to shriek my points over the hee-hawing of a bunch of be-tweeded men who are still behaving like life is one long Eton bun fight. Why don’t they listen to each other properly? You can learn something from someone, even if you disagree with them. The whole point scoring debate thing is not for us, we prefer our discussions civilised, we haven’t had the years of rugby tours to prepare us for sledging masquerading as political debate.

Tony Benn once mooted the idea of  each constituency being represented by two candidates – one male, one female. I would love to see this implemented. That level of balance should see off the old-fashioned sexist behaviour so hotly denied by its perpetrators, and I think bring some much-needed new ways of looking at and dealing with politics in action.


Love Miss Cisco XXX


  1. Oooh I would completely love more women in politics. In any work i think they are really good at pulling stuff together and sometimes the voice of logic and reason. At the moment it feels like its one big pissing contest in government.
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  2. Nice post! Absolutely right that the hours and working conditions are the real obstacle – I wrote a blog post suggesting the male & female candidacy idea for each constituency a few months ago when they were trying to reform the Lords – with a House of Ladies [sic] to take its place. (That would get around the problems of doubling the number of MPs overnight)
    Something significant really needs to happen that’s for sure!

  3. I think you should run for Government …..
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  4. I think more women in politics would make this country a much better place to live. I loved it when the photos of Licia Ronzulli taking her daughter to Strasbourg went viral: we need more inspiration like this!
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  5. I have to say I agree with you. The government lacks a certain earthyness and realism that I think more women could bring to it. At the end of the day we are the ones getting down to the nitty gritty of life. We have so much to offer and so much that they could learn from.
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  6. Amen to that! But can’t see it ever happening, so it will carry on being men arguing and showing off how clever and funny they are to their mates. It totally is like one long rugby tour.
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  7. Yep, agree totally and love the idea of the one male and one female candidate.
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  8. This was discussed on Question Time last week – an interesting if cringe-making watch if you didn’t catch it.

    Unfortunately the argument still comes up that Maggie Thatcher was a woman, and she didn’t do a great job. Gahhhhhhhh!
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  9. Why was the m/f representatives plan never implemented? The balance would be wonderful! I recall from years ago the ‘fantasy’ stories of ‘if women ruled the world’ etc etc but I think those fantasies of balance and a different style of negotiations and all the other benefits women could bring to politics would only come true if there were a lot more women in politics. When people roll out Thatcher as an example of woman in politics they’re actually showing us an example of a woman in men’s politics–she had to adopt male strategies if she were to be successful in that world. I’m rambling, but anyway, I agree with you totally!! x
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  10. Sadly im not very political as if I can never can my point across properly and so I keep all opinions to myself x
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  11. National politics is certainly a difficult arena for a woman with young kids but in my experience there is a similar lack of women in local politics even though that sort of role is far easier to fit with a family and of course this is the pool from which national candidates are often selected. I had to take my two year old along to my local council selection panel interview last year and not only were the panel very supportive on the day but I was accepted. I think it’s a shame local politics is often ignored when so many important issues are actually managed at council level.
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    • You know, you are totally right, I forget about local politics, which is terrible of me. I would look into it, but not a gnats chance in hell of Labour getting anywhere here- they often don’t even put up a candidate because it is a lost cause. I am hugely impressed with you getting involved, I hope to hear of your successes in the near future.

  12. I think hours are working conditions are SO HARD for many “Mums”, especially in politics!
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  13. Can you please stand for Prime Minister?


  14. Exactly – you just wrote the post in my head so much better than it would have been if I had done it…women in politics…it doesn’t happen as much because practically it is extremely difficult. The hours, the time away from home – it all makes for a very tough decision for mums to stay in politics after having children. Edwina Currie (who?) was on TV once talking about it, and how her kids went to boarding school to enable her to be where she needed to be. Some families a) couldn’t afford that or b) would want to make that choice. A great post x
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  15. I couldn’t agree more with you when you mention the fact of each ‘side’ slating the other and digging in deep. SO SO childish, it’s what puts me off politics and makes me switch off rather than listen to their rambling back handed comments.
    THEY need to change first and the way they treat each other would be a good starting point
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  16. I wrote my university dissertation on women in politics, so I totally agree that there aren’t enough women in politics. It doesn’t seem attractive or plausible to many women which is a great shame, as making the chamber more diverse should lead to better policy decisions. I personally like the idea of job shares for constituency seats as I think this would enable more people to consider standing.
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