Women's Rights

Q61: Do you support the Equal Rights Amendment?

Biden: Yes. The U.S. Constitution does not explicitly protect equal rights for women. The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) will change this, enshrining in our Constitution the principle that all individuals, regardless of sex, are equally protected under the law. This amendment will expand protections for survivors of violence against women who participate in or require access to government programs, and potentially encompass the aims of the expanded civil rights remedy described above. I co-sponsored the Equal Rights Amendment nine times and, as president, I will work with advocates across the country to enshrine the ERA in our Constitution.

Bloomberg: Yes.

Buttigieg: Yes. I will secure women’s power and influence by accelerating ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment to recognize women’s equal rights in the Constitution.

De La Fuente: Yes. Equality and fairness – not just political equality, but economic equality. Equality without economic equality is an empty vessel.

Klobuchar: Yes. Senator Klobuchar strongly supports the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. In the Senate, she co-sponsors the Equal Rights Amendment as well as a joint resolution to remove the ratification deadline.

Sanders: Yes. Bernie is committed to combating the issues women and particularly women of color disproportionately face and ensure every woman in the U.S. has basic civil, human, and economic rights. Bernie is proud to have been a longtime supporter and cosponsor of legislation to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.

Steyer: Yes. Now more than ever, our laws must reflect and embolden our values as a nation. That means ensuring that our government safeguards justice and equality for women and revitalizes the historic strides of the Equal Rights Amendment from 47 years ago. As president, I will fight tirelessly to ensure that every person in our country is treated with equality, justice, and decency. I am proud to have worked to help flip Virginia blue and usher in the recent passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. It was long overdue.

Warren: Yes. It’s long past time for women’s equal rights to be recognized in our Constitution.

Q62: Will you commit to creating a gender-balanced Cabinet with at least 50 percent women, inclusive of black women?

Biden: Should I be elected President, I am committed to having a diverse and talented staff in my Cabinet and in the White House that reflects the country they serve.

Bloomberg: Yes.

Buttigieg: Yes. I commit to appointing at least 50% women to the Cabinet and judiciary and promoting gender- and racially-diverse leadership across all sectors.

De La Fuente: I will choose the best people for the job regardless of race, gender or sexual orientation.

Klobuchar: As President, Senator Klobuchar will nominate talented people to lead her administration who represent the diversity of America.

Sanders: Yes. When Bernie is President, his administration will be truly representative of the people. We will not have former corporate executives, big donors, and lobbyists in our administration. Instead, Bernie promises that his administration will look like America. That means a diverse set of backgrounds, viewpoints, and lived experiences. That means making sure that historically disenfranchised and marginalized communities play leading roles in our administration. In doing so, we’ll create a government that works for the many, not the few.

Steyer: Yes. My cabinet will reflect the American electorate of the United States, and African American women will not only be a part of our cabinet but will have senior leadership roles throughout my administration. Data show that the most diverse and inclusive teams are the most successful. Our campaign has worked to build a team that is more than 50% people of color — including almost half of our campaign directors. Of that number — African Americans make up the largest percentage of people of color.

Warren: Yes. Our government officials can best serve the American public when they reflect the diversity of the country itself — but right now, the federal government does not live up to this ideal. My administration will be committed to diversity and inclusion, starting on day one. That includes building a Cabinet and senior leadership team that reflects the full diversity of America, including having Black leaders in my Cabinet and White House staff and at least 50% of Cabinet positions filled by women and non binary people.

Q63: Do you support elevating and coordinating women and family issues in the White House and across agencies by re-establishing the White House Council on Women and Girls?

Biden: Yes. During the Obama-Biden Administration, we created a White House Council on Women and Girls, so that issues like equal pay, paid family and medical leave, and poverty were given the highest priority. The Trump Administration disbanded it. And they’ve ignored these issues and so much else. When I’m president, I will build on the work that President Obama and I did, so that at the highest level of government, we are always pushing for progress – and being held accountable.

Bloomberg: Yes.

Buttigieg: Yes. I will reinstate the White House Council on Women and Girls. This council will be a policymaking body closely integrated with senior staff on the White House Domestic Policy and National Security Councils to ensure that gender equity is at the forefront of policy priorities at home and abroad, and that every policy is analyzed with a gender and racial lens.

De La Fuente: Yes. Issues that affect all women should rise to the highest level of government and in my White House, those issues and representatives will ALWAYS have a seat at the table.

Klobuchar: Yes. Senator Klobuchar is committed to elevating and coordinating women and family issues in the White House and across agencies including by re-establishing the White House Council on Women and Girls.

Sanders: Yes. We will create a government where a diverse set of backgrounds, viewpoints, and lived experiences are at the table making decisions, including by re-establishing the White House Council on Women and Girls. We will make sure that historically disenfranchised and marginalized communities play leading roles in our administration. In doing so, we’ll create a government that works for the many, not the few.

Steyer: Yes. When I think about the journey of women in this society, and that journey to full equality and independence over time; that is part of a great American journey towards equality and justice, that has many stages, but which we must always, absolutely commit ourselves to. That is a central part of everything we do as a value driven country. I will make it a priority to re-establish the White House Council on Women and Girls to elevate and coordinate women and family issues in my administration.

Warren: Yes. Through its interagency approach, the White House Council on Women and Girls reinforced the principle that all issues are women’s issues. As president, I will reconvene this Council and recommit our government to ensuring gender equality.

Q64: Will you support reinstating Harriet Tubman onto the $20 bill in 2021?

Biden: Yes. The move to r eplace Andrew Jackson with Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill was proudly initiated under the Obama-Biden administration, and I believe we are overdue in getting a woman on our currency.

Bloomberg: Yes. Redesigning our currency and adding Harriet Tubman to the $20 bill is an important step that our country can take to pay homage to one of the most important figures in our country’s history. Tubman not only reshaped the course of our nation’s history, but also redefined courage. Paying homage to her is something Mike intends to support.

Buttigieg: Yes. I will issue the $20 bill with the image of Harriet Tubman. We will mark the importance of Black women in American history by reversing the Trump administration’s political delay of the new bill.

De La Fuente: Yes. Because history and individuals who are essential to creating change for the good deserve the recognition.

Klobuchar: Yes. Senator Klobuchar will consider reinstating Harriet Tubman onto the $20 bill.

Sanders: Yes. Harriet Tubman is an American hero. Bernie supported the Treasury’s decision to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill in 2016, and will absolutely support this effort when he is President of the United States.

Steyer: Yes.

Warren: Yes. It’s time to honor Black women’s contributions to American history. Putting Harriet Tubman on the $20 is a good way to start.

Q65: Do you support the United States’ ratification of the U.N. Convention for the Eradication of All Forms of discrimination Against Women?

Biden: Yes. For nearly 40 years, CEDAW has been the most important international tool for advancing gender equality. It is simply embarrassing that the United States has not ratified. We are in the company of some of the most oppressive countries in the world, including Iran, Sudan, and Somalia. From the very beginning, the Obama-Biden Administration made ratifying this U.N. convention a priority. As president, I will continue to push the Senate to ratify this important tool, so that we can better advance the rights of women and girls here at home and around the world, restoring U.S. global leadership on women’s rights, which has been decimated under the Trump Administration. In this tremendously important year, marking the 25th anniversary since the Beijing Conference and the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolutions on women, peace, and security, we have an opportunity to re-seize leadership and momentum to achieve equality.

Bloomberg: Yes. The U.S. was one of the first signatories of the Convention in 1979 and now is one of the few countries—along with the likes of Iran and Somalia—not to have ratified it. This only gives other countries cover not to fulfill their own obligations under the treaty. Mike will support Senate ratification of the Convention so that the U.S. can take its rightful place as a leader in promoting the rights of women worldwide.

Buttigieg: Yes. It’s a travesty that the United States has yet to ratify CEDAW, originally adopted in 1979. 97% of the world’s nations have already done so. I would pursue ratification as an integral part of my commitment to reducing the gender gap, which we know impacts women of color disproportionately.

De La Fuente: Yes. We must end all discrimination of all people and my administration will lead by example to Americans.

Klobuchar: Yes. Senator Klobuchar supports ratification of the U.N. Convention for the Eradication of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

Sanders: Yes. Together, we will build a world based on peace and justice, not war and destruction. We will invest in our people, not spend unlimited money on endless wars, not discrimination and hate. Bernie is committed to fighting against all forms of discrimination and will work with other nations to advance economic, racial, social, and environmental justice for all.

Steyer: Yes.

Warren: Yes. I’m committed to ending gender-based discrimination and violence everywhere

Q66: Will your Administration work to promote the participation of women, including black women, in conflict prevention, management and resolution to
ensure women’s voices are included to create more inclusive and democratic societies through U.S. Foreign Policy?

Biden: Yes. As president, I will restore respected U.S. leadership in foreign affairs, leading not just by the example of our power, but by the power of our example. This starts by ensuring women – particularly women of color – are participating in national security leadership positions right here at home. For too long, we haven’t fully drawn on the rich talent within the American foreign policy community. I have made an important campaign pledge to seek gender parity and diversity in my national security appointments, if elected.

Globally, we know that women’s participation is key to advancing peace and security. This principle was a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy in the Obama-Biden Administration when we created the first U.S. National Action Plan on women, peace, and security. Congress enshrined many of the initiatives we started into law in the 2017 Women, Peace, and Security Act. Though the Act became law under Trump, implementation has limped along; the Administration is months behind in complying.

My administration will return to a government-wide focus on uplifting the rights of women and girls at home and around the world, including championing women’s inclusion in conflict prevention and resolution, and peacebuilding. From Colombia to Congo to South Sudan, women are already on the front lines, building peace in their communities. We will do more to empower women’s voices to prevent and resolve conflicts and to counter violent extremism and terrorism, because we know that women-led initiatives in these areas are often the most likely to succeed, but also the most under-resourced. We will also advocate that women have a seat at any table where matters of peace and security are decided–from peace talks to legislatures–so that a country’s efforts to prevent conflict or to recover from it, benefit from the contributions of half the population. And we will lead by example by ensuring that our own delegations include a diverse range of women’s voices.

Bloomberg: Yes. Mike believes and has seen first-hand through his philanthropic work that incorporating the voices of women is critical to everything from promoting peace, education and economic opportunity, to combating climate change. His administration will work to enhance women’s voices in all aspects of U.S. diplomatic and development outreach, in international bodies where the U.S. has influence and in the task of resolving conflicts worldwide.

Buttigieg: Yes. Evidence overwhelmingly tells us that women’s empowerment and gender equality are associated with peace and stability. Women moderate extremism, prevent conflict, and stabilize peace agreements. We’re celebrating the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 this year, which recognized women’s agency in matters of peace and security. That peace is more sustainable when women are equal partners. My administration will make implementing the US National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security a priority. We will ensure that the voices of women of color are lifted up more comprehensively throughout this and other critical strategies. Women of color are disproportionately affected by conflict and violence, and I don’t believe we should be advancing peace and security agendas without them at the table. Their relative absence is representative of the diversity challenges within America’s larger national security and foreign policy space. That’s why I’m making inclusivity and diversity a priority in my campaign and why I will continue to do so as President.

De La Fuente: Yes. Absolutely.

Klobuchar: Yes. Senator Klobuchar is committed to promoting the participation of women, including black women, in conflict prevention, management and resolution to ensure women’s voices are included to create more inclusive and democratic societies through U.S. foreign policy.

Sanders: Yes. Bernie’s administration will reflect the diversity of America, and that includes ensuring women, and women of color, are included in shaping U.S. Foreign Policy. Together we will lead the world in improving international cooperation in the fight against climate change, militarism, authoritarianism and global inequality. We need a foreign policy which focuses on democracy, human rights, diplomacy and peace.

Steyer: Yes. Championing the rights and empowerment of women and girls globally will be a top priority of my foreign policy agenda. Women make up half the population: unleashing the full potential of women can drive the growth and prosperity of countries around the globe. I support the defense and expansion of rights and opportunities for women and girls to fully participate in an equitable global climate-safe economy. It’s also crucial that we protect women’s safety and security. My administration will strengthen global efforts to combat trafficking and roll back the appalling Trump administration decision to deny asylum to survivors of domestic violence. I will review the State Department’s Commission on Unalienable Rights and ensure that the commissioners are protecting the rights of women, girls, and the LGBTQ community. My administration will also address divisions that make women and girls more vulnerable to the climate crisis and perpetuate environmentally-harmful agricultural practices. I will increase funding to the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative and improve access to education and resources.

Warren: Yes. The fact – borne out by data – that societies are healthier, more stable and more prosperous when women are empowered should inform every aspect of our foreign policy and development strategies. I will initiate and scale up successful programs dedicated to advancing women’s economic and social rights, in particular to help close global gaps in health and education outcomes and to promote economic opportunities by tackling the structural social, legal and other barriers that hold women back. To ensure that gender equality is at the center of international security and development efforts – instead of an afterthought or a sideshow – we must ensure meaningful representation by women at the highest levels in the halls of power, from the United Nations and other multilateral organizations, to international financial institutions and multilateral development banks, to the boards and management of private corporations and foundations with global reach. This effort must begin at home, where women currently account for only one-third of the U.S. foreign policy workforce, which is why I was proud to take the Leadership Council for Women in National Security pledge and commit to gender parity in my national security appointments. We can do better, and under a Warren administration we will.