Statement by National Security Advisor Robert C. O’Brien:
Today, I was honored to pay my respects to Seraph Young Ford, the first woman to cast a ballot in an American election. We all admire the courage of this great American. On February 23, 1870, Young cast her historic ballot for municipal elections in Salt Lake City, Utah, after the Utah Territory became the second territory in the Nation to extend voting rights to women. The grand-niece of Brigham Young, Ford moved from Utah to Maryland in the late 1870s. After her death in 1938, she was buried in Arlington National Cemetery, where she rests with her husband, a Union Army veteran.
Last month, the United States celebrated the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment. The determination and spirit of the leaders of the women’s suffrage movement continues to inspire the fight for greater rights for all. I am proud to serve in this Administration, which remains committed to championing women’s economic empowerment.
President Trump is leading the movement of the economic empowerment of women and girls around the world through efforts such as the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative; the Women, Peace, and Security Strategy; extensive actions to combat human trafficking and empower survivors; and continued pressure on authoritarian regimes that treat women as second-class citizens. This whole-of-government approach to women’s economic empowerment will continue to lead to peaceful, prosperous, and stable societies around the world.