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Katie Walsh Shields: Strong, conservative women are shaking up the Republican party


Daily Caller News Foundation

The Republican Party is no longer the party of “old, white men,” and it has not been for some time. Republicans stand for families, freedom and economic opportunity for all, the exact opposite of what you’re seeing from today’s divisive Democrat Party. The way liberals are so quick to erase the word “woman” from everyday life, it is no wonder why so many women are flocking to the Republican Party.

Having worked on campaigns, at party committees and in the White House, I saw firsthand how strong women, from the candidate, to staff, to volunteer level, led to our party’s successes.

Look at Sen. Katie Britt, a mother, lawyer, former Senate chief of staff and the first woman to be elected senator from Alabama. Not to mention the only Republican woman in the Senate with school aged children. Then there’s Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, a mother, the third woman to serve as White House Press Secretary and the first female governor of Arkansas, and the youngest governor in our country.

Not to be forgotten is Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel who after her current term, will be the longest serving RNC chair in the party’s history. These women are the next generation of conservative leaders.

I was honored to not only work alongside these women on their campaigns, in the halls of Congress and the White House, shaping the narrative and the conservative agenda, but I am even more honored now to help champion them. While liberals like Don Lemon might think these women are past their prime, I can attest that they are just getting started.

Deservingly, there has been a lot of attention drawn to the historic number of Republican women currently serving in Congress. At the start of the 116th congress, there were only 21 Republican women in the House and Senate combined. Think about that — that’s less than 5% of Congress.

Yet, in just two election cycles, that number doubled. The 42 women in the 118th Congress are mothers, lawyers, journalists, ranchers, law enforcement officers, veterans, nurses, immigrants and so much more. But most importantly, they are fearlessly conservative in a time when it is hip to be woke.

What is often an untold story, are the recruiting efforts put forth from champions like Speaker Kevin McCarthy. The speaker has made it a priority to recruit women to run for office.

In just his first term as Republican Leader, he doubled the number of women who filed to run for office. Because of his recruitment efforts, we not only have a record number of women in the House of Representatives, but a record number of Hispanic women in Congress.

Speaker McCarthy not only led House recruiting efforts, but also surrounds himself with strong female operatives like his former Chief of Staff Barrett Karr and current Deputy Chief of Staff Natalie Buchanan Joyce. These women, outside of their roles in taking back the House majority, helped pave the way for women to be seen as not only leaders at the staff level, but as necessary assets in senior leadership.

As a party we’re seeing more women rising through the political operative ranks, more women running for office and women being elected to office. It is imperative that while the mainstream media and liberal elites do their best to tear down Republican women, we continue to provide examples of strong, steadfast conservative leaders to the next generation.

When I am speaking at college campuses and high school history classes, I come across so many young women who are afraid to identify as conservative. And I don’t blame them. Every time they see a woman on TV stand up for her conservative values, they also see liberal elites in Hollywood and the mainstream media mock her.

Young women should be proud to be conservative. We are pro-family, pro-life, pro-parents and pro-freedom — everything that makes our Party and nation so great.

That’s why we need more mothers to run for school board, for statewide office, for federal office. We need more women to volunteer on campaigns, to work in government, to run for party leadership.

While the Left is too busy trying to define what a woman is, conservative women will continue to be the leaders our children and our country so desperately needs.

Katie Walsh Shields is a political and public affairs consultant in Washington, D.C., with more than 15 years of experience working at the highest levels of national politics and government, including serving as White House deputy chief of staff and as chief of staff to the Republican National Committee.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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Republished with permission from Daily Caller News Foundation

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