For the first time in history, two women will lead both chambers of Congress.

For the first time in history, two women will lead both chambers of Congress.

(Photo: Deputies Presidency and Press).

For the first time in Argentine history, two women are at the head of the National Congress, after 158 years of parliamentary career, when they were appointed this Tuesday Cecilia Moreau as head of the Chamber of Deputies, in a tandem that completes Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner in the presidency of the Senate.

The presidency of the lower house was formally left this Tuesday in the hands of Moreau, in a special session that fired Sergio Massa in that rolewho from this Wednesday will be Minister of Economy, Productive Development and Agriculture.

The presence of women in key roles in Congress is also visible in the provisional presidency of the Senate, in charge of the legislator for Santiago del Estero, Claudia Abdala de Zamorawho assumed that position on December 10, 2019 proposed by the front of all (FdT), and in the radical Carolina Losadawho occupies the second vice president.

Female participation in Congress began to grow in 1993 when the female quota law was applied for the first time and, after the gender parity that was implemented three years ago, more and more women have responsibility for both running the chamber and in the advisory commissions of the body.

Cecilia Moreau: “It is an honor as a political activist to have been appointed president of the Chamber”


However, since the consecration of the women’s vote in 1947materialized by the impulse of Eva Peronthe presence of women in Parliament had a marked asymmetry: after having occupied 30% of the seats in the early 1950s, the number of female legislators fell in the following decades and only recovered that percentage in the 1990s with the quota law.

Now in Parliament both chambers will be led by women since Cecilia Moreau is since this Tuesday the President of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate has been chaired for two years by Fernandez de Kirchner.

In any case, the upper house had already had women in charge of driving, such as Gabriela Micheletti during the Government of Cambiemos, but this had not happened until this Tuesday in Deputies.

In fact, 158 years passed until finally a woman, Cecilia Moreau, assumed the presidency of the lower house until December, replacing Massa.

Upon taking office, Moreau assured that he faces a “additional responsibility” for being the first woman to preside over the body and he emphasized: “I am not going to govern with my hormones, I am going to do it with my head, with my militant heart and with my convictions.”

One of the deputies who most highlighted the importance of the new president of deputies being a woman was the legislator Graciela Camanowho had already proposed last December the appointment as authorities of the body of Rosana Bertone (FDT) and Maria Eugenia Vidal.

“We are deciding that a woman is going to sit there for the first time in the history of this Congress, of 158 years of men,” he stressed in his speech.

In her message she recalled another radical, the feminist Florentina Gomez Mirandaand assured that if the historic leader were alive, without a doubt, she would be supporting the rise of Moreau -with a long history of radicalism- to the presidency of the body.

It is an honor as a political activist to have been appointed president of the Chamber, Moreau said on Tuesday
“It is an honor as a political activist to have been appointed president of the Chamber,” Moreau said Tuesday.

“When Cecilia sits there with the majority vote, we will have a female Legislative Branch with Claudia (Abdala de Zamora) and Carolina (Losada) in the Senate,” celebrated the experienced Peronist legislator.

Since the Gender Parity Law was implemented in 2019women already represent more than 36% of the seats: that is, they occupy 28 of the 72 seats in the Senate.

In the Front for All (FdT), out of 33 legislators, 13 are women (39.3%), while in Together for Change (JxC), out of 31 members, only 11 are women (35.4%); while another four respond to provincial blocks.

In the Chamber of Deputies, the entry of 61 women last December -out of the 127 seats that were put into play- made it possible for the representation of that gender to be 44.74% since December 10, the highest percentage since the return of democracy.

Among the majority forces, the FdT is the only one with a majority of women: 60 of its 118 members (50.84%).

In JxC, the female presence is 47 out of 116 (40.51%), numbers motorized in a greater percentage by the Civic Coalition, which contributes 8 of its 11 members and by Radical Evolution, which has 6 women out of a total of 12 places.

The majority partners have smaller presences in terms of percentages: the PRO adds 21 women out of 50 members (42%) and the UCR was reduced to 9 out of 33 (27%).

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