Our Favorite Takeaways from the 2016 Conventions

Balloons drop from the ceiling at the end of the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

Balloons drop from the ceiling at the end of the 2016 Democratic National Convention.
Image by Lorie Shaull, Flickr Creative Commons.

August 04, 2016

It’s hard to believe how quickly the 2016 election is approaching. Both parties have wrapped up their conventions and named their official nominees: Donald Trump and Gov. Mike Pence (R-IN) on the Republican ticket and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) on the Democrats’. If you follow @AAUWActionFund on Twitter, you probably saw us live-tweeting both parties’ conventions over the last two weeks. AAUW Vice President of Government Relations Lisa Maatz was on the ground in both Cleveland and Philadelphia representing AAUW issues, tweeting about her experiences, and meeting with AAUW members and supporters.

Why was AAUW at both conventions? We are a nonpartisan organization that works with policymakers of all stripes on our issues. And both parties brought up some of our favorite topics: equal pay and, front and center, the need for more women to run for office and get involved in the political process.

The speeches at both conventions were packed with inspiring messages from notable women and allies. The Republican National Convention featured Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) and retired NASA astronaut Eileen Collins. The Democratic National Convention featured First Lady Michelle Obama, Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and our own NCCWSL Woman of Distinction Sarah McBride, who was the first transgender woman to speak at a major political convention. We were proud to hear multiple mentions at the DNC of Jeannette Rankin, an AAUW member who became the first woman elected to Congress 100 years ago.

When women vote, we change the conversation. It's my vote. I will be heard.One major takeaway from both conventions was the importance of voting. It’s on all of us to educate ourselves and turn out to vote! The AAUW Action Fund It’s My Vote: I Will Be Heard campaign has resources that can help in your get-out-the-vote efforts. These items include voter education resources such as our AAUW Voter Issue Guide to explain issues important to AAUW members. Women will likely decide this election. Candidates must understand they need to speak to and act on issues important to women because we will hold them accountable, in November and beyond.

In our 135 years, AAUW has witnessed and directly contributed to many historical milestones. This week we saw a ceiling shattered with the first major party nomination of a woman candidate. She was the first, but she won’t be the last. Remember, there are many women candidates running on both sides of the aisle. Find out where they stand on important issues and make sure you’re registered to vote!

Now the real work begins.
Let’s show the country that when women vote,
we change the conversation!



Below, check out a collection of @AAUWActionFund and @LisaMaatz tweets from both conventions.

AAUW Attends the RNC

AAUW Attends the DNC



AAUW staff on National Voter Registration Day 2015

How to Organize a Voter Registration Drive

This guide provides some easy steps to running a successful voter registration campaign.

Photo by longislandwins

How to Organize a Candidate Forum

A candidate forum is a public event where candidates running for office are invited to express their positions on AAUW issues.

Man's hand dropping ballot into a voter box with Republican elephant and Democratic donkey images on wither side.

Voter Education

AAUW is dedicated to making sure every woman is registered and has all the information she needs to cast her vote.

Amy Becker By:   |   August 04, 2016

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