May 11, 2021
From the nation's leading source on all things women and politics.
For the First Time, CAWP Releases Data on Women in Municipalities 
For the first time, CAWP has expanded its data collections to include a nationwide look at women in municipal offices. This data includes information on incorporated cities and towns with populations over 10,000, and it dispels a long-held myth that women are better represented in local politics than their share of seats in state and federal offices. In reality, women’s representation in municipal office – mayoral offices and city councils or similar bodies – is analogous to their representation at other levels: women hold less than one-third of seats in municipal governments nationwide. Women currently hold 30.5% of municipal offices in the country, while they hold 30.9% of seats in state legislatures and 26.5% of seats in the U.S. Congress.

In addition to the nationwide rate of municipal representation, CAWP’s new data collection also shows how women fare in each state and allows for rankings by state on these metrics. These state breakdowns allow for interesting comparisons between CAWP data on municipal and state legislative offices; many states are consistent in women’s representation in municipal vs. state legislative offices, but others show remarkable discrepancies.

For interactive graphics, state rankings, and the full dataset, visit our new Women in Municipal Office factsheet.
"The overrepresentation of men in all political offices is troubling." A Q&A with Dr. Mirya Holman 
Tulane University political scientist Mirya Holman participated in a Q&A for the CAWP blog in which she reflected on our new municipal office data and how it relates to her own work on women in local office. “From a standpoint of democratic health, the overrepresentation of men in all political offices is troubling – what does this say about the strength of our municipal institutions?” she writes in the post, “Given that cities across the US are making policy in areas like policing, infrastructure, climate change, and elections security, wouldn’t we want robust and representative democracies?” Read the full discussion on CAWP’s blog, and check out Dr. Holman’s book on women in local office, Women in Politics in the American City.
CAWP data and analysis tell the full story of women in American politics.

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2020 Voter Turnout Data Is In! 
The U.S. Census released a new trove of data about voter registration, so CAWP is now able to update our data on gender differences among voters. To no one’s surprise, women once again voted in greater numbers and higher rates than men, continuing a trend that goes back to the 1980s for rates and the 1960s for raw numbers. CAWP research associate Claire Gothreau broke down some notable points from the new data on Twitter. Highlights include:

  •  68.4% of women reported voting vs. 65% of men. This 3.4 pct point gap is slightly smaller compared to 2016 when there was a 4 pct point gap.
  • Turnout increased from 2016 among men and women across all racial and ethnic groups, although the largest increases were among Asian American voters and Hispanic voters. Notably, turnout among Asian women increased by nearly 13 percentage points.
  • Among citizens with less than a 9th grade education, men have historically turned out at slightly higher rates than women. In 2020, women reported voting at higher rates - 38.2% vs. 37%.
  • Consistent with past election cycles, women with some high school education or higher turned out at higher rates than men. The gender gap among the most educated citizens tends to be relatively small (consistent with past cycles).
  •  Consistent with trends over time, the gender gap among married voters tends to be very small, but the gender gap among voters who have never married was 7.4 percentage points with 60.5% of women reporting that they voted vs. 53.1% of men.

Dive into the full data, with interactive infographics, at our Gender Differences in Voter Turnout fact sheet.
Apply Now for the Rutgers-Eagleton Washington Internship Award
The Rutgers-Eagleton Washington Internship Award Program will be providing one-time grants of up to $1,000 to outstanding Rutgers undergraduate students completing a summer in-person or partially remote internship in the government/non-profit sector in Washington, D.C. The monetary award is meant to ease the financial burden of working in Washington D.C. by offsetting living, travel, or technology expenses.

Pictured Danna Almeida, 2017 Rutgers-Eagleton Washington Internship Award Recipient.

Rutgers undergraduates from all campuses and all majors are invited to apply by Friday, May 21st! More information is at the Eagleton Institute of Politics’ Center for Youth Political Participation website.
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