Diane Black: “Don’t Let Them Tell You No”

Communications • March 8, 2016


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Republicans believe that America is a place where no matter your background or walk of life, you can — and should — be trusted and empowered to pursue your own dreams.

That’s why Republicans in the People’s House are building an agenda to restore a confident America, where every American – including women – feels secure in their lives and futures.

This Women’s History Month, we celebrate the incredible accomplishments of women who have helped blazed the trail – women like Rep. Diane Black (R-TN).

“…at 65 years old, it is an opportunity for me to reflect on the history I’ve witnessed in my own life,” Black writes in an op-ed published on TIME magazine’s Motto.

Below are excerpts from Black’s op-ed, available HERE.

“One of my greatest frustrations at the state legislature was how Republicans, the minority party at the time, refused to even nominate a candidate for Speaker of the House. We knew that Democrats had the numbers to hold the Speakership, but year in and year out we conceded the battle without even mounting a fight. In fact, I was told that, not only would I vote for the entrenched incumbent Speaker, but I would also help pay for a gift to congratulate him upon his certain reelection.

“It made no sense to me that representatives elected as Republicans would head to Nashville and cast their very first vote for a Democratic Speaker. So I urged some of my more senior, male colleagues to offer themselves as a nominee. …

“When no one took the bait, I decided to do it myself. The Iron Lady’s words echoed in my ears: ‘If you want something said, ask a man. If you want something done, ask a woman.’ …

“I hadn’t spent a lifetime in the political class like many of my colleagues. I left a fulfilling career in nursing to serve at the legislature, so I reasoned early on that, if I wasn’t going to make a difference, there was no reason to stay. With that in mind, I ran for Speaker of the House . . . and lost. …

“It would be another decade before Tennessee finally elected its first woman to that position, but I soon learned that what felt like a defeat at the time would pave the way for success later on. …

“In my conversations with prospective candidates, I often think back to that talking-to I received in a back office of the state Capitol all those years ago, and I remind women: don’t let anyone tell you no. If we do, we risk denying ourselves an important opportunity.”

Read Rep. Black’s full op-ed by CLICKING HERE.

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