While Wendy Davis’s 10-hour filibuster was a marvel of political assertion, the best moment from the nail-biter of a Texas Senate session came minutes before midnight, when Democratic Senator Leticia Van De Putte petitioned Senator Robert Duncan for permission to speak. She had been crisscrossing the Senate floor, failing to get Mr. Duncan’s attention, as broader-shouldered men blocked her at every turn.
“Mr. President, at what point must a female senator raise her hand or her voice to be recognized over the male colleagues in the room?” she asked. The protesters gathered above the Senate floor cheered, and they continued cheering past midnight, ensuring that the bill, which would have shuttered most of Texas’s abortions clinics, failed.
“Amen,” was my reaction to Ms. Van De Putte’s comment. I’m an attorney who spent two years practicing in New York federal courts. I’m a nobody compared with Ms. Van De Putte and Ms. Davis, but like them, I’m a woman participating in public life. And whether negotiating a settlement with an adversary or appearing in court, I always felt like I was fighting to be heard on the same terms as my male counterparts. Read More