Who We Are

Peggy Simpson

Peggy Simpson

Peggy Simpson worked 17 years for the Associated Press, in Texas and Washington, D.C. and covered economics and politics for the Hearst Newspapers. Simpson also served as Washington bureau chief for Ms. magazine and reported on Eastern Europe’s transition from communism to a Democratic market economy, as a freelancer during the 1990s. She has taught at Indiana University, George Washington University and at the American Studies Center at Warsaw University. She currently is a freelance writer in Washington.


Featured Columns

2012 Elections: Women Make Their Mark

2012 Elections: Women Make Their Mark

November 7, 2012

Women claim the last word in the "war on women" election this year, with 55 percent backing Barack Obama and many progressive women winning House and Senate seats. More »

State Legislators Grab Platform to Defend Contraception

State Legislators Grab Platform to Defend Contraception

March 21, 2012

With a mix of humor and dead seriousness, women in state legislatures act to force their male colleagues to understand what's at stake in restricting contraception and choice. More »

U.S. Senate Races—Democrats Look to a Strong Field of Women

U.S. Senate Races—Democrats Look to a Strong Field of Women

December 19, 2011

Several Republican women are also likely to be competitive for open Senate seats in 2012. More »

Voters Reject GOP State Initiatives—What's the Message for 2012?

Voters Reject GOP State Initiatives—What's the Message for 2012?

November 10, 2011

In a week when voters shot down anti-union and anti-reproductive choice measures, President Obama took pride in initiatives to advance women's equality. More »

Micro-lender Fonkoze to the Rescue in Haiti

December 17, 2010

A micro-credit program and banking system for more than 200,000 women in Haiti has come to the rescue of the overall economy in the wake of the devastating earthquake. At a time when Haitian commercial banks remain closed, Fonkoze, the Haitian branch of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, mobilized over the weekend to get funds to its members in rural towns as well as Port-au-Prince. More »

The Tea Party Movement - Taking the Pulse

The Tea Party Movement - Taking the Pulse

April 26, 2010

So far this election year, the angry grass-roots organizing energy is strongest on the right, but the Tea Partiers are hard to pigeonhole says veteran D.C. journalist and frequent WMC reporter Peggy Simpson. More »

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend Calls on Progressive Catholics to Resist Pressure from Bishops on Abortion

December 16, 2009

At a critical moment for health care reform, Townsend says it is essential for religious progressives to speak up. More »

Health Care Reform: Pro-choice Forces Win the First Round in the Senate

November 23, 2009

Senate Democrats held firm to allow debate to begin on a health care bill that avoids the abortion restrictions of the House-passed measure—and pro-choice activists are mobilizing to keep the heat on. But there are many hurdles ahead. More »

Will Progressive Groups Help Feminists Stop Stupak?

November 13, 2009

After the shocking setback in the House for abortion rights, women’s rights groups turned their attention to the Senate, which could begin debate on health care reform next week. More »

Taking the Fall for Health Care Reform?

November 9, 2009

The price for health care reform in the House is women’s right to choose—and, adding insult to injury, the deal was negotiated by the first woman to serve as House speaker. More »

Health Care Reform: Post-recess Politics

September 2, 2009

House and Senate members return to D.C. next week having heard an earful from constituents on health care reform. It falls to President Obama to cut through the confusion. More »

Health Care Reform—What’s At Stake for Women?

August 20, 2009

The firestorm about the public option may miss the point for women. Women’s groups have worked with the White House and legislators to put critical expansion of care in all the major health care reform bills making their way through Congress. More »

Sotomayor’s Confirmation—What Her Victory May Cost the Republicans

Sotomayor’s Confirmation—What Her Victory May Cost the Republicans

August 7, 2009

Conservatives tried to convince the Senate, and the nation, that an impressive judge with an impeccable record was simply a product of affirmative action. It didn’t work. More »

First 100 Days—Feminists Give High Marks to Obama

April 29, 2009

Women’s rights activists give high marks to President Obama for his fast footwork in reversing many policies of the Reagan and Bush presidencies. More »

Quiet Push to Recognize Suffrage Sites

Quiet Push to Recognize Suffrage Sites

April 9, 2009

Spearheaded by New York Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, powerful chair of the House Rules Committee, legislation was signed into law at the end of last month that will help celebrate the not-so-ancient history of how women won the vote in the United States. More »

Chances Improve for Ratification of CEDAW

March 30, 2009

The United States has been an odd holdout in ratifying the UN treaty on women’s rights. Now it’s a priority of the Obama Administration, and Senator Barbara Boxer chairs the subcommittee that will hold hearings. Still, there’s no guarantee. More »

Obama Comes Through, Reversing Bush Era Repro-rights Restrictions

Obama Comes Through, Reversing Bush Era Repro-rights Restrictions

March 11, 2009

Monies to expand family planning services for poor women that were cut from the stimulus package are restored in President Obama’s proposed budget, and the administration rescinds a last-minute Bush Administration rule that would have severely weakened women’s access to reproductive health services. More »

Can Feminist Groups and Bloggers Bridge the Digital Divide?

February 11, 2009

In Washington, DC, members of feminist organizations of long standing and feminist members of the blogospere met face to face for the first time. Now comes the hard part: to see what each group might offer the other. More »

President Obama and Women’s Rights Activists: Celebration and Bumps in the Road

January 30, 2009

The White House ceremony and reception marking the President’s signature on his first major law honored feminists and the bill’s inspiration, Lilly Ledbetter. But the week was also marked by setbacks for legislation important to women workers and to women who depend on Medicaid. More »

Word to Activists, Don’t Stop Now

January 20, 2009

Even in the midst of the inaugural celebration, activists gathered in the capital to plan out their roles in the coming months. More »

Net Gain Probable for Women in Congress

October 24, 2008

Some of the new women candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives are Democrats challenging in red districts. Their victory could swell the Democratic majority. More »

McCain Ridicules Health Exemptions for Abortion

October 16, 2008

The final presidential debate touched on three important issues for women, while women’s groups continue to press the campaigns for an elusive commitment to a Lifetime TV forum that would allow more extensive discussion and questioning. More »

Pundits and Viewers Give Palin a Pass

October 3, 2008

Governor Sarah Palin’s strategy of avoiding tough questions and talking into the camera will strengthen her connection with the GOP base. Independent voters are another matter. More »

Speaker Pelosi: Leadership Tested By Fire

September 30, 2008

The financial meltdown is testing the leadership abilities of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and then some. More »

Financial Meltdown Sidelines Politics As Usual

September 22, 2008

Pollsters Grapple With a Sarah Surge

September 15, 2008

Tracking the women’s vote in this historic presidential election is proving to be tricky. More »

As GOP Convention Opens, the Palin Factor

September 2, 2008

Accepting the Nomination, Obama Takes On McCain

August 29, 2008

After a month of incoming fire, Barack Obama used his acceptance speech to hit back at Republican John McCain, saying he was out of touch with the suffering of ordinary Americans today. More »

Both Clintons Deliver for Obama, With an Assist from Joe Biden

August 28, 2008

It was a one-two punch from the Clintons. Pundits praised their speeches on behalf of Barack Obama with every sports metaphor that exists: a knockout blow; a 10-strike, out-of-the-ballpark coup. More »

Michelle Obama Wows the Critics

August 26, 2008

Michelle Obama talked about parents who struggle to make sure their children can get a share of the American dream. She talked about every-day principles of life, taught by parents and grandparents and passed on to the next generation. More »

Women Welcome Obama’s Choice of Biden

August 23, 2008

Leaders of key women’s rights groups breathed a sigh of relief at Barack Obama’s selection of Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his running mate. More »

Obama and Women Leaders Get Down to Business

August 8, 2008

Barack Obama got a lot of advice from more than 30 leaders of national women’s groups when he met with them in late July. Some columnists have written caustically about the need for Obama to pacify angry feminists who had backed Hillary Clinton. More »

Making Strides in Politics and Online

July 30, 2008

Jehmu Greene, a legendary grass roots organizer, plans next to “look laser-like at organizing young women. More »

A Reflective NOW Looks to the Future

July 25, 2008

Jehmu Greene, a legendary grass roots organizer, plans next to “look laser-like at organizing young women. More »

With Hard Work, Clinton Holds Her Own on Super Tuesday

February 6, 2008

Obama Gains Momentum vs. Clinton&Clinton

January 28, 2008

In Nevada, Women Again Come Through for Clinton

January 22, 2008

The NH Vote—How Did Hillary Pull It Off?

January 9, 2008

Iowa Voters Reject Front Runners

January 4, 2008

Many Tests Are Posed by the Iowa Caucuses

January 2, 2008

Appeals Court Spells Out Standards To Prevent Sex Abuse in Sports

October 28, 2007

Museum Film Festival Appeals to Fresh Audience

September 27, 2007

Hillary’s Rove Factor

September 6, 2007

New Study Explores the Aftermath for Women

July 10, 2007

Hillary in Book-land

June 18, 2007

Looking to Congress for Justice on Wage Bias

June 1, 2007

Understanding Women’s Risks for Cardiovascular Disease

April 9, 2007

Ready to Govern

Ready to Govern

January 5, 2007

As the future administration takes shape in Washington, D.C., women come to the table with impressive credentials and the backing of national women’s organizations. More »