In the history of presidential campaigns, no fewer than 20
women have run as presidential candidates, but never has a woman had a better
chance to get elected than Hillary Clinton does in 2008. The first, Victoria
Woodhull, ran in 1872. As one might imagine, she was a woman ahead of her time,
a prominent advocate for women's suffrage hoping to reform the government.
In the 1860s Ms. Woodhull and her sister Celeste Claflin
opened the first woman-run stock brokerage firm. In 1870, Ms. Woodhull
established Woodhull and Claflin Weekly, a publication that allowed her to
freely express her ideas about social reform. Shortly thereafter, in an effort
to become more politically active, Ms. Woodhull created the Equal Rights Party under
which she ran the 1872 election.