Recently, Speaker Nancy Pelosi participated in a Tweetchat organized by MomsRising. The questions poured in from a diverse group of participants. Dozens of individuals, bloggers, organizations, media and even a fellow legislator (Rep. Rosa Delauro) joined in to chat about everything from the latest legislation impacting moms and families to secrets from the Congressional restroom.
Quick media coverage of the tweetchat came from The Hill, a DC paper, which posted this article with some fun and informative highlights minutes after the tweetchat ended. Here’s a sample of the back and forth:
MomsRising @speakerpelosi1st ?: How do you think being a mom and a grandmother helped prepare you to be Speaker of the House? #womeninpolitics
speakerpelosi Being a mom and a grandma is my motivation. Like many of you, I was a Mom Rising!#womeninpolitics
speakerpelosi - Organization, diplomacy, consensus building, time mgt, multitasking - and a sense of humor - all help.#womeninpolitics
MomsRising RT @9to5org What can the House do to move Healthy Families Act forward? #paidsickdays#womeninpolitics
speakerpelosi Rep. DeLauro's bill is a necessary follow up to FMLA - it & child care strengthen America's families#womeninpolitics
LisaMaatz Yes! RT @rowefinkbeiner: @SpeakerPelosi Thx 4 standing up4 PaycheckFairnessAct. How can we push Senate? Wmn need this! #womeninpolitics
speakerpelosi @LisaMaatz - Sen. Reid said Paycheck Fairness will come up when Congress returns. Women will win when this bill is signed #womeninpolitics
PunditMom RT @donna_norton @SpeakerPelosi What memory from motherhood makes you laugh? #womeninpolitics / & which one most politically motivated U?
speakerpelosi @PunditMom When I asked my daughter if I should run for Congress, she told me to get a life - making me laugh & motivated! #womeninpolitics
MomsRising What would you like to change, if anything, about how the media covers #womeninpolitics?#nameitchangeit
speakerpelosiWomen shouldn't be deterred from politics by how the media covers #womeninpolitics. Women in power are here to stay.
(You can search for the hashtag #womeninpolitics on 10/22/2010 to find more tweets in this chat.)
With so many interested people participating and just about half an hour to engage, there were some questions that didn’t get answered. Below are Speaker Pelosi’s responses to some terrific additional questions that came in for her:
Can we expect Congress to pass unemployment extension before Nov. 30 cutoff?
I hope so. Sadly, as the Republicans in the Senate showed this year, it just takes one of them to stop the unemployment relief.
How can we improve #healthcare for children?
With 7 million children uninsured in the U.S., the Affordable Care Act is a huge step forward—expanding coverage and access to quality and affordable health care (and banning discrimination against children with pre-existing conditions). It also builds on our work to expand CHIP – offering 11 million American children health insurance. First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign is also vital—there’s nothing more important than getting kids on the right track with exercise and nutrition at a young age. In addition, we’re working on moving the child nutrition bill forward next month. And of course, we need to do more to ensure food and toy safety.
Can you identify issues on Capitol Hill that have gotten attention because political moms took lead?
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz has three young children and was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago. While breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in young women under the age of 40, there’s not much awareness of that fact--resulting in delayed diagnoses with far too many young women’s lives being cut short. Debbie is now a breast cancer survivor in her early 40s and outspoken advocate for early diagnosis. She introduced and championed the EARLY Act to increase awareness, which will save lives. The EARLY Act was signed into law this year as part of the Affordable Care Act.
How can I be a strong advocate for my children - at school, at the doctors and in Washington?
Moms know best how to be the best advocates. All I can add is do your research, keep informed, talk to other moms, and don’t give up—your voice matters!
We’re grateful to Speaker Pelosi for taking time not only to tweet with us but also to follow up with answers to these additional questions.
And if you're on Twitter, follow @MomsRising to stay updated on our latest actions, tweetchats, blogposts and more! Looking forward to tweeting with you!