Voting has always been important to me. But ever since becoming a parent, I feel there is even more of an importance to voting. Not only do I have to set a good example but I also have the power to help vote in someone who will leave the region a better place for future generations, including my children. My vote feels like it has more weight now.
Voting is a privilege. It is also exciting to do. I grew up in a household that talked politics and my parents always encouraged me to be involved, do my research and most importantly vote. My parents fostered a love of politics in me. I hope I can carry on that legacy with my children.
This will be my second federal election as a parent and I still haven’t quite figured out how to vote as a mom, is it any different? Of course, my priorities in my day to day life have shifted but I am still the same person with the same beliefs.
And as a mother to two daughters, do I vote for Claire Rattée because she is the only female running in our riding? Or do I check a box for Michael Sawyer because his party leader is the only national female party leader? While I like to support women, I don’t think voting for someone solely based on their gender is smart, or frankly very feminist. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t love to see a female prime minister soon. It boggles my mind that Canada hasn’t had an elected female prime minister yet.
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There is only one riding in Canada with all female candidates running in it. However, there are 33 ridings across the country that don’t have a single woman running in them.
It isn’t all bad news for girl power. The last election saw a record number of female Members of Parliament, which is good and means we are headed in the right direction. There were 88 women elected during the 2015 election and another four in by-elections in 2017, bringing the total number up to 92 and representing just over 27 per cent of elected Members of Parliament.
I hope the trend continues this election and sees even more women represented in the House of Commons. I also hope it inspires more young girls to get involved in politics and we can see a female leader of our country in the very near future.