May 18, 2021
Women Do Not Need Husbands’ Permission to Vote
The Office of the Supreme Leader has issued a number of religious opinions relating to the election in response to questions from the public. Among the rulings are that voting is religiously obligatory and submitting a blank vote is haram. One question asked if women required permission from their husbands to leave the house to vote, the answer of which is no, they do not require permission.
May 15, 2021
Zahra Shojaei Registers
Senior female Reformist politician, Zahra Shojaei, became the most high-profile woman to register in this election. Shojaei gave her reasons for registering as an effort towards the fulfilment of Ayatollah Khomeini’s words that “women should intervene in the basic destiny of the country”. Shojaei also registered at the same time as Saeed Jalili, and it was noted that unlike Jalili, she arrived modestly and without entourage or fanfare. Shojaei candidacy is another test of the Guardian Council’s interpretation of the Constitutional term “rajol-e siasi (politican man/person)”, and whether women will again be excluded from running.
May 2, 2021
Guardian Council: Women Can Run for President
Spokesman for the Guardian Council, Abbas-Ali Kadkhodaei, stated that women are permitted according to the law to run for President, and that they were subject to the same vetting of candidates as men. However, Kadkhodaei’s comments were ambiguous, because he only said that women were allowed to register to run for President. While this implies a woman can become President, he stopped short of explicitly saying so.