State elections: Where do women run? where do women win?

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Voters in Washington state are used to seeing women’s names on the ballot. Not only is Washington represented in the U.S. Senate by two women, but one-third of the state legislature is female. Elsewhere, voters face a different political environment. South Carolina is a good example. Not only do several thousand miles separate Washington from South Carolina, but the two states are worlds apart in terms of gender and politics. In South Carolina, fewer than 10 percent of state legislators are women, and voters there are much less familiar with women candidates. The presence of women in statewide office varies across the country as well. For example, Arizona has set a number of records for women in state politics, including being the only state in the nation where a woman governor has succeeded another woman. Arizona is not typical, however. In a recent study, women held more than one-third of all statewide executive offices in some states but no statewide offices in other states. This state diversity in women and politics makes for interesting trivia. But does it matter that the presence of women officeholders varies so widely? Investigating the progress of women in the states is worthwhile for several reasons. If more women are to win seats in Congress, more women need to seek office in the states. State legislative and executive offices are rungs on the career ladder typically climbed by ambitious politicians – stepping stones to higher office including the Oval Office.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGender and Elections
Subtitle of host publicationShaping the Future of American Politics
PublisherCambridge University Press
Pages189-214
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9780511807282
ISBN (Print)0521606705, 9780521844925
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)

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