Pantsuit Nation, a secret Facebook page for Hillary Clinton supporters, is still going strong. So much so that its founder, Maine resident Libby Chamberlain, announced Monday evening via Facebook that it was going to enter its next chapter.
“I am *beyond* excited to announce that there is going to be a book. A Pantsuit Nation book. A book of YOU. A book BY YOU. A permanent, beautiful, holdable, snuggle-in-bed-able, dogear-able, shareable, tearstainable book,” she announced. “Your voices. Your stories. Our community. Our project. Our message of hope and change.”
After the election, the Pantsuit Nation page shut down — not because Chamberlain was giving up, but instead, she wanted to work with her admin team on how to best serve the group that had grown to more than 3 million followers. Once the page was up and running again, there was an outpouring of suggestions on how to move forward; some provided a crisis text line offering counseling while others created Pantsuit city chapters.
“As I’ve said a few times, I believe Pantsuit Nation was more important on the morning of November 9 than it was on the morning of November 8. Our charge going forward — our MISSION — is no less than to shift the course of history. And we’ll do it through stories,” wrote Chamberlain.
“As many of you have commented, the stories of Pantsuit Nation are worthy of a book. The kind of book that will inspire and connect people. I’m so proud to be starting the process of bringing that beautiful idea to life,” she continued. “I believe that collecting our stories in a book is an important step, and a very exciting one. The book will further our mission and the premise that stories give meaning to action and that meaningful action leads to long-term, sustainable change.”
For members who’d like their stories to be considered for the tome, Chamberlain is asking them to email her at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to their post.
Chamberlain also announced that she and her team “have filed the paperwork to establish Pantsuit Nation as 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) nonprofit organizations.” She explained, “These organizations will support the advocacy, education, and political action efforts we have already seen grow out of Pantsuit Nation, and will continue to be a part of our work in the future.”
As Clinton wrote in her thank-you note to the group on election day, “For some of you, it’s been difficult to feel like you could wear your support on your sleeve — and that’s why this community has been such a special place. Your stories and photos of family members and friends are wonderful to see, but what truly warms my heart is the thousands of comments of support and love you all send to each other.”
Not long after Chamberlain’s announcement, the founder was faced with criticism about the book deal. In response, Chamberlain has issued a statement to the backlash.
“My goals for the group remain the same. It is not the place for name calling. It is not the place for tearing each other down. It is not the place for divisiveness,” she wrote Wednesday afternoon. Chamberlain also clarified that the “participation in the book is voluntary” and “proceeds from the book will support Pantsuit Nation and the causes that are central to the group.” Her message can be read in full below.
2:55 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 21: Updated with the Pantsuit Nation founder’s statement to the criticism about the book deal.