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The World’s Most Powerful Women: November 8

Nov 08, 2016

In the waning hours of the 2016 election, women endured one more dig.

In a story published by Bloomberg Businessweek, Brad Parscale, the digital director of Donald Trump’s campaign, compared forecasting today's election outcome to "predicting your wife’s mood.”

“You have no idea what you’re going to get until you get home,” he said.

The quote was all too representative of the election's treatment of women—retrograde, tone-deaf, and altogether insulting to a constituency that will determine today's result.

But lest we end this campaign cycle on such a sour note, while Parscale was setting women back decades, elsewhere, a group of women was doing just the opposite—celebrating progress.

A growing online movement is urging women to wear white clothing to polling places today in a nod to the suffrage movement of the early 1900s whose members also donned white. The idea gained traction after Hillary Clinton chose an all-white pantsuit for the third and final presidential debate.

Some early voters have already posted selfies of themselves, clad in white, after casting a ballot. Yes, many of them are Clinton supporters, but others don't proclaim an affiliation. "Very proud & emotional to stand with dozens of women young & old honoring women before us who fought for our right to vote," said one Twitter user, pictured in a sea of white blouses. The trend is a show of solidarity and a much-needed acknowledgement that women have actually come much farther than this campaign's rhetoric implies.

clairezillman

EUROPE/MIDDLE EAST/AFRICA

La 9% difference

Like their Icelandic peers, women in France yesterday walked off the job at precisely 4:34 pm and seven seconds. If they were men, they would have earned their entire paycheck by then. Feminist groups called for the strike to protest France's gender pay gap, which stands at 9%.

Financial Times

Coming up short

Tsetska Tsacheva, of Bulgaria's ruling party, was expected to win the first round of the nation's presidential election and become its first female head of state. Instead, she lost narrowly to socialist-backed candidate Rumen Radev, prompting a run-off vote. An eventual loss by Tsacheva could mean a snap parliamentary ballot and could tighten the nation's political ties to Russia.

Reuters

Taking on taboos

Amid demands that Saudi Arabia end its male guardianship laws, Souad al-Shammary, a twice-divorced mother of six, has become a vocal advocate for interpretations of Shariah law that allow women more freedom. Her fight began when authorities took away her daughter.

Associated Press

THE AMERICAS

A lifetime of votes

This story follows the life of Gladys Elaine Beeman, who was born on August 26, 1920, the day American women won the right to vote.

Washington Post

A revelation

Vox's Sarah Kliff writes about how she came to realize the importance of a female president after concluding in 2008 that it wouldn't be that big of a deal. At 23, she thought women already "ruled," but as a 31-year-old, her perspective has shifted. "When I think of the United States as a country that lacks women editors in chief and chief executives, it now seems more remarkable for a woman to become commander in chief."

Vox

Fighting femicide

Women in Argentina recently marched to protest violence against women. Last year, 235 women there were victims of "femicide," or murder of a woman because of her sex, and it's actually one of the safer Latin American countries for women. Progress in addressing the problem has been slow because police do not take domestic violence seriously enough. At least a fifth of the women killed last year had complained to law enforcement about the men who were later accused of their murders. 

Economist

ASIA-PACIFIC

Another concession

In an attempt to stop the snowballing scandal related to her friend and shadowy advisor, South Korean President Park Geun-hye withdrew her nomination for prime minister today. She asked lawmakers to recommend a new candidate and promised that she would put that person in charge of her cabinet.

Washington Post

Asking for protection

Senator Leila De Lima, one of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's loudest critics, is seeking a court order to stop the controversial leader from using her personal life to persecute her. Duterte has accused De Lima of ties to illegal drugs—which she denies—and of having an extramarital affair.

Bloomberg

IN BRIEF

The secret lives of Mexican nuns

National Geographic

How to govern like a feminist

Elle

Pantsuit Nation, the giant, secret Hillary Clinton Facebook group—explained

Vox

Apparently British women swear way more than men

Refinery29

Géraldine Fasnacht wants to prove BASE jumping isn't crazy 

Newsweek

PARTING WORDS

"[Hillary Clinton] could be the first woman president and no one even talks about it."

--Russell Simmons in the latest episode of Fortune Unfiltered

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