FiveThirtyEight Elections: Women in Politics

FiveThirtyEight explores the current state of women in politics and the difference gender makes.
3:28 | 07/27/16

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Transcript for FiveThirtyEight Elections: Women in Politics
Hillary Clinton is in a historic position and on November 8 she could very well be our first madam president. But the need not milestone plays a serious absence of women in elected office. Because when it comes to women rising to the highest offices in the land the US has long allowed to behind the rest of the world. To see the snacks and let's take it can congress. All the way back in 1917 Jeannette Rankin became the first woman to serve in the US House of Representatives. And when country later the number of woman in congress has climbed from one all the way to 104. But that's still only 19% to consider this. Women make up half of the US population and yet are consistently less than 25% of those in elected office nationwide. And women of color have feared even worse. Right now minority women only make up 6% of congress despite being 20% of the US population. Going back to congressional and as a whole if we compare the percentage of their representation. To every other country on the planet. The United States comes in at 96. Have to rate between Cyprus and Kyrgyzstan. But what difference does gender really make. The study showed that women tend to prioritize policy differently than men eighth just look at the 103 congress. For a bunch of different reasons the number of women winning his seat in 92 had doubled. The results new or added funding for Women's Health Initiative the violence against women act and an assault weapons ban. Digging a little deeper we see these are the result of how women voted on key legislation. Democratic women voted differently than democratic men. And the Republican side if there's even more dramatic. So for a nation has long prided itself on innovation and leadership world wide how is it that we still see so few women representing us. Well aside from not being legally allowed to vote in the states until nineteen twining. They're sick gatekeeper challenged the people who groom future candidates and decide who doesn't doesn't run are still mostly guys. Women also still take on a greater share of child care and health work which limits are career advancement in many fields politics among them. And compared to men we still get more attention from the media about her looks personality and marital status. I'm pretty big barriers when it comes to seeking public office. And yet several studies have found that when women run they win. And at about the same rate as big not too much an issue qualifications or performance. But that not enough women run in the first place. So just by running Hillary Clinton and others flight path have pushed our expectations forward. The share of Americans who said they would be willing to vote for a woman president has climbed to 95%. Have real woman in the White House full magically fix the gender disparity in other offices. But a senior policing and American life under a woman commander in chief could all turn notions of who can mean. In ways we can only begin to imagine.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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