Chelsea Handler, Amber Tamblyn, Sen. Barbara Boxer Talk Female Empowerment in Politics

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From left: Stephanie Schriock, Barbara Boxer, Amber Tamblyn, Nina Tassler and Constance Wu

Chelsea Handler hosted a panel featuring Amber Tamblyn, Constance Wu, Padma Lakshmi, Sen. Barbara Boxer and Teen Vogue editor Elaine Welteroth.

Hundreds of women and men gathered for brunch in the ballroom of the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles to hear a discussion organized by Emily's List on the importance of female representation in government Tuesday. 

With the #MeToo movement still rippling through Hollywood, the need for women in positions of power has never been more apparent, and Chelsea Handler spoke about the importance of women uniting to elevate each other. The panel featured Amber Tamblyn, Constance Wu, Padma Lakshmi, Sen. Barbara Boxer and Teen Vogue editor Elaine Welteroth.

"You don't have to be everybody's best friend," she said in her opening remarks. "But as a woman, you have to be a sister to every single woman you meet … What has happened since the election and the way that women have reacted is that we have come together and we are staying together because we are stronger together."

Sen. Boxer was blunt with her thoughts on Trump and his notorious Access Hollywood comments. "You've got a monster in the White House. We really do. Who said that when he sees a woman he wants to grab her in her private parts. Well to me that's a felony, not a president."

Tamblyn, who has been candid about her own experiences with sexual harassment, said that the election of Trump had ignited a firestorm. "One of the most important things for me right now is to make sure that we keep using the correct language for what's going on with women right now, which is that we're in the midst of a revolution, and to call it by any other name is to demean the work ... that we are collectively doing to ask for transparency and pay equality in the workplace."

Lakshmi was even more explicit when she talked about fighting back against online commentators who attacked her and told her she had no right to speak out. "I read my comments and I just started responding to them. I just started calling them out. I said 'What the hell are you talking about? Because I wear a bikini that I don't have a brain, that I don't pay taxes, that I am not a mother? Well f— you!'"

In addition to the actresses and entertainers present, several women who are running for political office were also in the room, and the event served as an opportunity for them to network and share their political message with potential supporters.

Emily’s List was created in 1985 and is the nation's largest resource for women in politics. The organization has raised more than $500 million to support pro-choice woman candidates and has helped elect hundreds of women to state and national offices.

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