TRANSCRIPT: Female Senators Sit Down With Diane Sawyer

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And if I could say when I came to the House, and that was a long time ago, there were-- women were about 5%. Now they're 20%. It took them 30 years to go from 5% to 20%. In the Senate we went from 2% to 20% in 20 years. So we're doing better here. And I think this class as you look around, Republicans and Democrats-- women in the Senate, I think that because of this new class and the-- the caliber of the people coming and the quality of the people coming, I think that hopefully in my lifetime-- and I really do hope and pray this is the case, we will see 50%. But--

DIANE SAWYER: Senator Collins though, you've been wary of st-- women's issues as opposed to all issues being women's issues. Twenty women going to change something central? Is it a quantum shift in leadership in some way?

SENATOR SUSAN COLLINS: It is. I think if we were in charge of the Senate and of the administration that we would have a budget deal by now. (LAUGHTER) (UNINTEL)--

(OVERTALK)

DIANE SAWYER: Do you all believe that?

(OVERTALK)

DIANE SAWYER: Senator Ayotte, you believe that too, it would be done?

SENATOR KELLY AYOTTE: Well, I think that-- you know, women are great problem solvers. And so-- you know, I don't know if it would get done, but I know that the people here are committed to making sure that we solve our problems.

DIANE SAWYER: And how is that different from the men here?

(OVERTALK)

SENATOR KELLY AYOTTE: Well, I think the men are as well. I mean, I think to say that men aren't focused on solving problems wouldn't-- wouldn't be accurate. And-- I think that many of our male colleagues, I-- I have to say, have been very supportive since I've come in the Senate as well.

FEMALE VOICE: But I do think women--

DIANE SAWYER: L-- let-- (UNINTEL) let Senator Collins finish.

SENATOR SUSAN COLLINS: --let me just-- let me just finish my thought on that. And Claire is a perfect example. Claire and I have worked together on so many different issues. Barbara and I have, Patty and I have, Amy-- I mean, I could go down-- the whole list of people here. And what I find is with all due difference to-- deference to our male colleagues, that women's styles tend to be more collaborative.

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