In about 5 hours, the polling stations will close, and the first constituencies will start to declare. Will it be Labour? Will it be Tory? Or will the country be divided once again? The polls have been all over the place, the bookies unsure, but what I do know is this: more women are getting involved than ever before.
Back in May, I wrote about the importance of politics, of voting, and the history of women’s suffrage. I wrote about how women almost have a duty to vote, to pay respect to the women who came before them. Women under 30 are the least likely to vote, according to #SHEvotes, a statistic I can only face with utter horror. But are women less likely to vote because they’re less likely to feel represented within politics? There may be something to that. Thankfully, more and more women are getting stuck in, carving a path for young women to pursue a career in politics.
The Women’s Equality Party is, of course, in the lead, with all of their candidates being women, and Labour is second with an almost equal 40%. The Green Party and SNP follow close behind – and with Nicola Sturgeon at the helm in Scotland, I dare any woman to not be inspired.
Our current Prime Minister is a woman, yes, but she is also a Tory, and she, like Thatcher (and other British female leaders), is not interested in pushing for equality. But Sturgeon is right. While May and her Tory government may stand for everything I hate, I’m still proud to be able to say that we have had two female leaders. And with more women getting involved, who knows where politics is going? I want to see an equally split cabinet, I want to be represented in Parliament, I want issues specific to women being addressed. And I want to see women succeeding.
I almost ran in my local election last month. I would have been another woman standing for the Women’s Equality Party, but I decided against it, for multiple reasons. But having the chance, the option, the opportunity, to stand as an MP and represent the women of the country, is an opportunity I’m thrilled to have, and I will never forget the hardships women faced in order for me to have it.
We have had less than 100 years of all women being able to vote. Although I’m waiting with baited breath to hear the result of the election, I’m also interested in how many women voted this year – and how many young people. Since Brexit, more young people have been taking notice of politics, getting involved with discussions on social media. And why not – it’s our future, after all. Let’s fight for it.
Did you vote? How are you hoping it will go? Let me know in the comments!