Today is Super Tuesday, which is the kickoff to the full-blown presidential primary season. It gained its name because this is usually the day that most states hold their primaries and caucuses, which is also the best opportunity for a candidate to pick up a large share of the delegates needed to win their party’s nomination. Often referred to as the “silly season,” traditionally, Super Tuesday is posited to be the day that will most accurately decide the state of the presidential primaries and how it all will shake out at the party’s conventions.

In honor of International Women’s Month and Super Tuesday, let’s play “Two Truths and a Lie” to test your knowledge of women in electoral politics.

A. Over the 247-year history of the United States, more than 200 women have run for the office of president.
B. Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm was the first woman and the first African-American to run for president under the Democratic Party banner.
C. Actress and comedienne Roseanne Barr ran for president of the United States in 2012 and placed sixth with just under 50,000 votes.

Let’s take these statements one at a time: 

A. TRUTH! According to historians at the Smithsonian Institution, the number of women who have run for office exceeds 200 and includes candidates who ran for president even before women secured the right to vote under the 19th Amendment. Our most recent history of women who have left it all on the field for the top office of the United States includes former Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (2016), Carly Fiorina (2016), Marianne Williamson (2020 and 2024), and former U.N. Ambassador and South Carolina governor Nikki Haley (still running – 2024).


While Shirley Chisholm was the first Democrat African-American woman in Congress and Chisholm did run for the 1972 Democrat Party nomination for president, she was by no means the first woman or the first African-American to run for the presidency. Victoria Claflin Woodhull ran for president in 1872—48 years before the 1920 ratification of the 19th Amendment. Woodhull’s running mate was African-American abolitionist and activist Frederick Douglass. Woodhull became a staunch advocate for women’s rights, founded her own newspaper, and was the first woman to own a Wall Street investment firm. An impressive list of accomplishments for any era.

Shirley Chisolm served seven terms in the United States House of Representatives. In her 1972 presidential run, she was opposed by the Black Male Congressional Caucus, and blocked from participating in televised debates. After a legal battle, Chisolm was only able to make a single speech in support of her candidacy. Despite this, many women, minorities, and students followed the “Chisholm Trail,” where she entered 12 primaries and garnered 10% of delegates (152 votes).


In 2012, actress and comedienne Roseanne Barr ran for president on the Peace and Freedom ticket. Her vice presidential running mate was none other than Cindy Sheehan, who was famous for protesting against then-President George W. Bush after the death of her son while he served in Iraq. With 49,534 votes, Barr placed sixth, behind Green Party candidate Jill Stein.

Stein, a Harvard-trained physician, ran for the presidency in 2008, 2012, and again in 2016, where it was surmised that Stein split off some of the left-leaning vote, thwarting Hillary Clinton’s chances of becoming president.

History shows that women’s accomplishments in electoral politics continue to grow, and it is only a matter of time before a woman will attain the presidency.

Bottom line: 

A woman’s place has always been on the forefront of change in America. Past, present, and future, from Sojourner Truth, to Elizabeth Cady Stanton, to Vice President Kamala Harris, for better or worse we continue to change the shape of politics and in turn, the shape of our nation.