If you were listening to Kudzu Vine last night you may have heard us talk about the new Monday feature on Blog for Democracy:  The Monday Question.  Each Monday we’ll offer a new question about politics, Georgia, or another topic for your comments.

This week we kickoff with:

Governing Magazine named Stacey Abrams, Georgia House Minority Leader, one of about a dozen Democratic lawmakers across the country with a bright future. Exactly what is bright or how bright Governing Magazine does not say, so let’s ask it another way: What is the “ceiling”? for Rep. Stacey Abrams?

What do you think?

 

11 Responses to The Monday Question

  1. David says:

    One would think that gender would be no big deal in 2011 and beyond, but in GA there is a long list of female candidates that have run statewide and lost.

    Chronologically:

    Karen Handel
    Hillary Clinton
    Denise Majette
    Cathy Cox
    Linda Schrenko
    Mary Margaret Oliver

    One of the saddest legacies for the state that gave America it’s first female US Senator. Rebecca Felton in 1922 and no a whole lot since!

    • Delicate Flower says:

      I don’t think gender was the reason you had a number of terrible candidates and a crook in that list. Just saying.

    • Drew says:

      Handel, Cox, and Schrenko also ran statewide and won, and they all defeated men in the process. I don’t think sexism is what caused them to lose their respective races for governor.

      It’s not that sexism isn’t an issue. It’s simply that I don’t see sexism denying a woman the Democratic nomination for Senate or Governor if she were to run, nor if she won the nomination would it be the reason she lost.

  2. Drew says:

    She’s in her late thirties, so I’d say she has another 30 years for her political career to peak.

    Even now, I don’t think that sexism itself would prevent her from becoming governor or Senator, and while racism would be a bigger problem, it isn’t as insurmountable as it has been (Obama did win 47% of the vote in Georgia in 2008, after all); in the next thirty years, they will be even less of a problem.

    The highest hurdle is the ideology of Georgia’s electorate. But that will change, too. We’ll have another Democratic governor in the next thirty years, and there’s no reason that couldn’t be Governor Abrams. So I’d say she will limited less by any of those factors than by her own ambition, talent, and luck.

  3. Dave Bearse says:

    It’s not diffiult to imagine her in the US House of Representatives, but from the almost nothing I know, would probably not be a good fit for her.

    Broaden the imagination to include a successful high profile appointment of some sort, or some other extraordinary event as a stepping stone to a broader office. Circumstances unfortunately are such that it’s likely for the forseeable future to take something along those lines for her to break into the ranks of statewide executive office.

  4. Ed says:

    I think she’s reached it. HOWEVER–I think that she will still continue to gain influence and power.

    THAT’s the question .

  5. David says:

    @Raquel Morris. I would not see these things a limitations of Stacey Abrams.
    Instead, maybe (hopefully not) limitations of 50% +1 of the Georgia voters and I badly want to be wrong about this.

  6. Steve Golden says:

    I’m kind of in the same boat as the above two. Stacey could have a shot at a number of offices, and I believe she would excel in any one of them. The reality of the situation, though, is that she’s probably not destined for statewide office any time soon, given the general status of our state’s electorate, and if she were to want to run for Congress, she’d be caught in a crowded and qualified field. It’s a very hard question to answer by virtue of her Atlanta roots.

    Truthfully, the better question to ask would be “How long will it be until a Democrat can have a realistic shot at regaining statewide office?” When that happens, Stacey will keep her upward momentum going.

  7. Raquel Morris says:

    I greatly admire Stacey Abrams and would love to see her name at the very top of a ballot. Like, President of the United States top. Unfortunately, I think David is correct about the limitations she faces. Minority Leader/Speaker are probably Stacey’s glass ceiling because of the nature of intra-party Caucus elections. Her chances in front of the people of Georgia, on the other hand, are just not that great.

  8. David says:

    What is “bright” is a key part of this question. If you look at the short time she has served, that her party is in the extreme minority, and that she is an African-American woman in a legislature that is has almost always been run be white men, then she has already over-achieved.

    The bigger questions are how far will the GA electorate let a Democrat go, a woman go, an African-American, a single person without children go? if Rep. Abrams is allowed to be judged on her own merits then sky is the limit.

    The great thing about this question, is I needed to go here and read this: http://www.staceyabrams.com/content/bio and learned more about her. If other Georgians do the same it can only help Stacey Abrams.