The Woman of the House Takes A Mommy Moment.
As photographers and videographers captured the historic "Mommy Moment," Pelosi stood there, beaming, surrounded by kids and basking in her newfound power. And it was the symbolism of this moment on which many members of the media commented over the past week. While some thought it was a seminal cultural moment for working mothers - with many noting that Pelosi balanced her family and her career, others disliked the melding of parenthood with politics.
Here's a round-up of how various news outlets and commentators saw Pelosi's Mommy Moment:
o The San Francisco Chronicle noted that Pelosi provided a "woman's touch": "Pelosi, joined on the floor by her six grandchildren, including a 2-month-old boy, wasted no time bringing a woman's touch to the office. As she concluded her remarks, the new speaker invited the children gathered in the historic chamber to join her on the rostrum and touch the speaker's gavel."
o The Washington Post observed the novelty of Pelosi encircled by children: "The role model herself stood on the dais to swear in the entire House amid a clutch of children, including several of her own grandchildren. She was calm enough to let one of the younger girls hold the newest grandbaby, and she was focused enough to do her work amid their antics, a talent she perfected years ago as a mother of five and grass-roots political activist."
o Huffington Post blogger Kristina Brittenham wrote that seeing this image made her wonder why male politicians aren't expected to balance families and careers: "Pelosi is just as likely to take a phone call from one of her daughters as from the President. She devotes as much time to her family as to her constituents . . . To be sure, Pelosi should be commended for honoring her many commitments with such balance and grace. Yet all of the accolades leave me asking: when will a similar reaction accompany the election of a man? When will men be expected to work two jobs, as women who work outside the home always have? Or, ideally, when will work/life balance be something that families achieve together, with both partners committed to their children and each other as well as their careers? When will that be the norm and not the exception?"