Female Presidential Candidates

They’ve tried, and failed, to run for the highest office in the land. I’m not talking about the Libertarian Party, even though that description fits them, too. I’m talking about the ladies.

Many women have made a run for the presidency. Who were they?

Victoria Woodhull, 1872: The first woman to run for president, Woodhull was an Equal Rights Party candidate. Ulysses S. Grant won the 1872 election as a Republican.

Belva Ann Lockwood, 1884 and 1888: Lockwood, who also ran on the Equal Rights Party ticket, eventually became the first woman lawyer to practice before the Supreme Court. In 1884, Democrat Grover Cleveland was elected president; in 1888, Cleveland lost to Republican Benjamin Harrison.

Margaret Chase Smith, 1964: Smith, a Maine Republican, was the first woman to run on a major party ticket, entering primaries in New Hampshire, Illinois, Massachusetts, Texas and Oregon, among others. She withdrew after the first round of voting at the Republican National Convention. Sen. Barry Goldwater won the Republican nomination and lost in a landslide to the incumbent, Lyndon B. Johnson.

Shirley Chisholm, 1972: The first black woman to run for president, Chisholm ran as a Democrat and received more than 150 votes at the Democratic National Convention. She was also the first black woman to serve in Congress; New York sent her to the House of Representatives in 1968. George McGovern won the Democratic nomination that year and lost to the incumbent, Richard M. Nixon.

Patsy Mink, 1972: A congresswoman from Hawaii, Mink ran in the Oregon Democratic primary as an anti-war candidate.

Pat Schroeder, 1988: Schroeder’s headline-grabbing campaign never got off the ground after the Democratic congresswoman from Colorado could not raise enough money. The party’s nomination went to Michael Dukakis and the election to Republican George H.W. Bush. Schroeder was first elected to the House in 1972, where she served for 24 years.

Elizabeth Dole, 2000: Dole announced her presidential bid in January 1999 and dropped out of the race nine months later. Republicans eventually nominated George W. Bush, who defeated Democrat Al Gore for the presidency. Dole’s husband, former Sen. Bob Dole, R-Kan., was the Republican presidential nominee in 1996, when he lost to Bill Clinton. Mrs. Dole is now North Carolina’s senior senator, elected in 2002.

And last, but certainly not least-

Carol Moseley Braun, 2004: The first black woman to serve in the Senate, Braun was one of 10 candidates to seek the Democratic presidential nomination in the last presidential election. Primary voters eventually tapped Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., as the nominee. He lost to George W. Bush. 1