The Life and Times of Barbara Jordan: A Twentieth-Century Baptist and Political Pioneer: The World Was a Different Place for Women in 1962 when Barbara Charline Jordan Lost Her First Race for the Texas House of Representatives (Biography) - Baptist History and Heritage
Some people said that she probably lost the race because people were not accustomed to voting for a woman. Jordan said, "Well, now, that is totally ridiculous, and I'll just have to try to alter that." (1) Because of the path cleared by Jordan, the doors that had been closed are open wider now for women and for minorities. (2) With spellbinding oratory, political savvy, and a self-sufficiency that raised her above petty partisanship, this United States congresswoman and celebrated black Baptist leader blazed a trail through the electoral ranks in the 1970s, overcoming institutional bias to become one of the most respected representatives of the downtrodden in the United States. (3) By whatever unstated, immeasurable, invisible standards the American people apply to candidates for Congress, women have seldom been their choice. Over the course of history, however, a select few have been imbued with a particular kind of motivation and drive to win congressional seats, sustain the support of their constituencies, and exert commendable leadership, thereby helping to shape the course of government and, thus, the course of the nation. Barbara Jordan was one of them. A black southern woman and Protestant, Jordan was raised in a meager economic environment, attended college, never married, and rose out of the ranks of poverty and the ordinary to accomplish extraordinary deeds.