Will Washington Finally Get a Women’s History Museum?
By Julia Halperin via “The Art Newspaper”
A long-stalled campaign to build a national museum for women’s history in Washington, DC, has gained new momentum. Key elected officials, including Eric Cantor, the Republican majority leader of the House of Representatives, and Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic minority leader, pledged their support this week for legislation to help create the museum.
The bill’s list of cosponsors has nearly doubled in the past four months, to 85, and a vote is expected to take place later this year. A record number of women serving in Congress—98, up from 91 last year and 24 in 1983—also gives the legislation’s chances of success a boost. The latest version of the bill is designed to calm the complaints of Republicans, who blocked an earlier proposal in 2010 because they feared a new museum would cost taxpayers too much money. The estimated $500m institution will be financed entirely through private funds; a non-profit organisation started to raise money for the museum has already collected $18m, according to The New York Times, and the actress Meryl Streep personally pledged $1m last year. But the project still needs Congressional approval to be built on federal land in downtown Washington, DC.