September 29, 2020
From the nation's leading source on all things women and politics.
Remembering Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away earlier this month following a battle with pancreatic cancer. In academia, her first position as a professor was here at Rutgers University in the law school; she also co-founded The Women's Rights Law Reporter, a student-run legal journal that still publishes from Rutgers School of Law-Newark. Last Friday, Ginsburg became the first woman in the history of the country to lie in state at the U.S. Capitol. The following day, President Donald J. Trump announced that he had selected Amy Coney Barrett, an acolyte of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, as his nominee to replace Justice Ginsburg. CAWP experts were called upon to discuss the political implications of the looming SCOTUS confirmation fight, particularly for women voters, by The Boston Globe, The Christian Science Monitor, The 19th News, and others.

On the loss of Justice Ginsburg, CAWP Director Debbie Walsh said: "She devoted her life to making our country a more equitable place for all its citizens. As a law professor, a legal activist, and as a judge she worked tirelessly to ensure that women have a seat at every table where decisions are made. Her life's work was based on the understanding that diversity improves outcomes. As she wrote, 'The country needs women judges and advocates, because wisdom isn't gendered but experience can be.'"
Register Now for CAWP's Suffrage Centennial Event
On Tuesday, October 13th at 1pm ET, join our virtual panel discussion, Beyond the 19th Amendment: A Century of Growing Political Power Amid Unequal Suffrage, featuring scholars Wendy Smooth, Deborah Gray White, Christina Wolbrecht, and moderated by our own Susan J. Carroll. The discussion will deepen our understanding of the suffrage centennial in examining how the women's vote has evolved over the past 100 years and the unequal ways in which access to the ballot was achieved for women of color.

CAWP is Hiring!
CAWP is hiring a research project assistant to join our data services team. CAWP data is relied on by scholars, practitioners, and journalists around the world; come join the team that makes it all possible. The research project assistant will work with our data services manager in maintaining and expanding our Women Elected Officials Database, collecting candidate data, and retrieving CAWP data to respond to queries from journalists, scholars, public officials, and the general public. Learn more about the position and apply here.
Already have a job?

You can still be a part of the CAWP team by helping support our work today.


The 2020 primaries are over. Here's what you need to know about the record numbers of women nominees.
CAWP Scholar and Director of Research Kelly Dittmar created an initial analysis of women nominees in the 2020 elections following the final primary of the regular primary season. Some highlights:
  • 298 women are nominees for the U.S. House, beating the record of 234 set in the historic 2018 midterms.
  • Among Democrats, 204 women are House nominees, beating their 2018 record of 182.
  • Among Republicans, 94 women are House nominees, far surpassing their previous record of 53, set in 2004.
  • 115 women of color are nominees for the U.S. House this year. This number is higher than any other election year. Both Democratic and Republican women of color have set new records as House nominees, with 82 Democrats and 33 Republicans winning nominations. A record number of Black (61), Latina (32), and Native American (6) women are House nominees.
  • 20 women are nominees for the U.S. Senate, falling short of the record of 23 set in 2018.
  • Among Democrats, 12 women are nominees in Senate races, not quite matching their previous record of 15, set in 2018.
  • Among Republicans, 8 women are nominees in Senate races, which ties their 2018 record. Incumbent Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) will seek nomination and election to complete the final two years of former Senator Johnny Isakson's term in Georgia's special Senate election on November 3rd.
Read the full analysis here.
Campaign Finance and Gubernatorial Offices
CAWP Senior Scholar Kira Sanbonmatsu and Rutgers political science doctoral candidate Kathleen Rogers published new research on women, campaign finance, and obstacles to winning gubernatorial office. In Advancing Research on Gender and Gubernatorial Campaign Finance, Sanbonmatsu and Rogers state that their "findings of gender differences in the structure of campaign receipts demonstrate the need for additional investigation of gubernatorial elections - elections that previous gender and campaign finance studies have overlooked," and encourage further scholarly exploration of the links between campaign finance and women's electoral success.
Learn More About the Gender Gap in U.S. Politics 
CAWP Research Associate Claire Gothreau has added to our information about the gender gap in American politics with a new fact sheet on party identification and presidential performance ratings. This fact sheet tracks gender differences in party identification back to 1952 and in presidential performance ratings back to the administration of George H.W. Bush. Curious how the gender gap may impact election 2020? Check out our 2020 Presidential Gender Gap Poll Tracker for information about the gender gap in both national polling and in battleground states.
CAWP Expert Appearances 
Experts from CAWP have been providing insight and analysis in a number of (virtual) forums recently. CAWP NEW Leadership® Director Christabel Cruz was part of a Piscataway Public Library panel to discuss the documentary Rigged: The Voter Suppression Playbook. CAWP Scholar and Director of Research Kelly Dittmar moderated the panel Women in the Electoral Arena a Century Later: Perspectives of Political Practitioners for the Boston University School of Law virtual conference about the suffrage centennial, The Centenary of the 19th Amendment: New Reflections on the History and Future of Gender, Representation, and Citizenship Rights. Lastly, a number of CAWP experts participated in this year's American Political Science Association annual meeting and exhibition: Dittmar and CAWP Senior Scholar Kira Sanbonmatsu participated in the roundtable discussion Seeing Election 2020 through Gender and Intersectional Lenses; Dittmar also participated in a panel on the 19th Amendment and presented a paper she co-authored on sexual harassment among congressional staff; and CAWP Research Associate Claire Gothreau chaired the panel Causes and Consequences of Emotions and presented papers on how self-objectification undermines political engagement and the interaction between implicit sexism and views on reproductive rights.
Violence and Women in Politics
U.S. Representatives Rashida Tlaib, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Jackie Speier introduced a House resolution last week that demands Congress recognize violence against women in politics as significant problem and encourages additional research about the issue in America while calling on the U.S. government to adopt policies that promote women's political participation and mitigate violence against women in politics both here in the U.S. and abroad. Our own research, particularly our report on the 2018 elections, Unfinished Business: Women Running in 2018 and Beyond, includes harassment, violence, and threats of violence as significant barriers to progress in increasing women's participation as political candidates and officeholders. Our Rutgers colleague, Mona Lena Krook, recently published the first in-depth book on the subject, Violence against Women in Politics. Read the full House resolution here.
CAWP in the News




Center for American Women and Politics
Eagleton Institute of Politics
Rutgers University | New Brunswick
191 Ryders Lane, New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8557
(848) 932-9384 - Fax: (732) 932-6778