Esme’s Blog: The Lasting Legacy of Geraldine Ferraro

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Geraldine Ferraro
(credit: CBS) Esme Murphy
Esme Murphy, a reporter and Sunday morning anchor for WCCO-TV, has...
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By Esme Murphy, WCCO-TV

For the young women of another generation the announcement that Geraldine Ferraro would be Walter Mondale’s running mate was a watershed. It was thrilling, stunning news. A woman as vice president meant a woman would be a heartbeat away for the presidency.

Today Sen. Amy Klobuchar put out this statement: “Like so many women, I will never forget the day Geraldine Ferraro was named as the first woman vice presidential candidate. There she was in Minnesota at Walter Mondale’s side, and it made me think anything and everything is possible.”

Klobuchar pointed out only one woman was serving in the Senate in 1984. Today 17 women are members.

I too remember that day. Even as the announcement was made, everyone knew the odds of the Mondale/Ferraro ticket winning were slim. The economy was improving. Ronald Reagan was enormously popular. Mondale/ Ferraro lost in a landslide. However, the selection of Ferraro continued to be an inspiration for a generation of women.

A few years ago, I heard Mondale comment that it continued to amaze him the degree to which the selection of Ferraro moved people and continued to be a subject he was questioned about. It is a sign of just how far a nation has traveled in 27 years that the men and women of a younger generation can wonder why the selection of a woman on a presidential ticket was such a big deal.

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