About

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When our Founder and CEO, Liuba Grechen Shirley, ran for Congress in 2018, her children were one and three-years old.  Liuba gave up her salaried job to run for office, which made it difficult to pay for childcare. Her mother, a teacher, watched her kids after school, but Liuba had them with her on the campaign trail every day. Meeting with constituents, hosting fundraisers and taking care of her children was unsustainable without childcare.

She no longer wondered why more mothers with young children weren’t running for Congress.

Liuba petitioned the Federal Election Commission (FEC), and became the first woman to receive federal approval to spend Campaign Funds for Childcare. This groundbreaking decision, which gained support from Secretary Hillary Clinton and 24 members of Congress, was unanimously and bipartisanly approved by the FEC. Fifty-one federal candidates have since used their campaign funds to pay for childcare — both moms and dads.

However, the ruling on Liuba’s request does not apply to candidates running for state and local office. ​

Vote Mama Foundation is the only organization working with politicians across the country to petition their state and local election commissions and introduce legislation to approve the use of Campaign Funds for Childcare by state and local candidates. We are tracking the use of Campaign Funds for Childcare at the federal and state levels to determine who is utilizing it and how it is impacting the makeup of our government.

Our goal is to pass Campaign Funds for Childcare in all 50 states by 2023.

Imagine if not one potential candidate at any level of our government had to consider the cost of childcare in weighing their decision to run for office. Imagine if we could break down the institutional barriers to empower a diverse pipeline of working mothers to run for office and win.

AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL

Since 2018, 51 federal candidates have used Campaign Funds for Childcare

30 moms running for federal office.

21 dads running for federal office.

43 Democrats running for federal office

8 Republicans running for federal office

​41 Congressional candidates

8 Senatorial candidates

2 Presidential candidates

73% of the funds spent on childcare have been by women

45% off funds spent by candidates of color

311% increase in spending from 2018 to 2020 cycle

AT THE STATE LEVEL

Since 2018, over 60 state candidates have used Campaign Funds for Childcare.

23 moms running for office

39 dads running for office

40 Democrats
 

20 Republicans

61% spent by women

16% by candidates of color

11 STATES

have passed legislation

5 STATES

where candidates are using them without a ruling

11 STATES

have allowed use through

a ruling