2017 still sees underrepresentation for women in government

2 months 4 weeks 1 day ago March 30, 2017 Mar 30, 2017 Thursday, March 30 2017 Thursday, March 30, 2017 3:32:00 PM CDT in News
By: Matt Vereen, KOMU 8 News Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY – Despite making up more than half of the American population, women only make up 24.8 percent of state legislators in 2017.

 The number of women serving as state lawmakers has more than quintupled since 1971, according to the Center for American Women in Politics.

 Recent elections, though, have not yet resulted in women’s representation matching their population percentage.

 Lael Keiser is a political science professor at the University of Missouri who used to work in the office of U.S. Senator Paul Simon of Illinois. She says this issue of underrepresentation for women is far from fixed.

 “Across the board women are underrepresented based on their presence in the population in all sorts of institutions, although they’re much less presented in legislators than in others places like public agencies,” Keiser said.

 Missouri is struggling with the rest of the country to get these numbers up. The state’s capitol houses the 30th worst female representation in the state legislator with 22.3 percent. The nation is only a little better with a state average of just under 25 percent.

 “People explain this gap as the result of either because of differences in lifestyle, or that the system is not encouraging women to run or that women have to run against stereotypes,” Keiser said.

 While the cause is unknown, it is clear that the lack of representation could lead to consequences.

 “The biggest sort of problem people worry about is that women bring a unique perspective to government. For example, things like experiences they have. The theory is when you have underrepresentation of any group whether its women or different ethnic groups or anything like that is that their voices and their perspective is not represented,” Keiser said.

 While polls clearly show that women do not agree on every issue, there are some policies that most tend to agree on.

 “There are some shared things. We know that republican and democratic women are likely to support policies that enhance families for example like child support enforcement or paid leaver for maternity for example,” Keiser said.

 There are a variety of groups and activists along with continually changing attitudes that has led to an increase in female representation over the years. This increase, however, was not across the board this year.

 While 2017 saw a slight increase in female state legislators and U.S. senators, it saw a decrease in U.S. representatives, state governors and Presidential cabinet members.

 Whether the numbers reflect it, though, attitudes toward women who run for office are changing overall in favor of women.

 “You can see a big difference in attitudes from previous time periods to now in terms of accepting women in positions in power,” Keiser said.

More News

Grid
List
FULTON — A 14-year-old girl is expected to make a full recovery after she was hit by a car Wednesday... More >>
34 minutes ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 10:21:53 AM CDT in News
MOBERLY - The missing lion statue head from Moberly Lion's Beuth Park has been recovered, the Moberly Police Department said... More >>
49 minutes ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 10:07:00 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A sinkhole has opened up and swallowed a car in downtown St. Louis. There have... More >>
1 hour ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 9:44:58 AM CDT in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A Florida-based provider of workers' compensation care management services is launching new operations in southwes t Missouri's... More >>
1 hour ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 9:39:28 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A grandmother of a 7-year-old girl critically wounded in a St. Louis shooting that killed her... More >>
1 hour ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 9:35:43 AM CDT in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - A St. Charles man drowned at the Lake of the Ozarks after suffering a medical... More >>
1 hour ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 9:13:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia tweeted in its page a reminder for Columbia residents that shooting fireworks is not... More >>
9 hours ago June 29, 2017 Jun 29, 2017 Thursday, June 29 2017 Thursday, June 29, 2017 1:15:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Regional Airport is almost fully equipped to handle to the increased traffic that comes with a... More >>
16 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 6:45:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The total solar eclipse is now less than two months away and people are beginning to plan. ... More >>
16 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 6:10:00 PM CDT in Eclipse Planning
BYRNES MILL (AP) — An eastern Missouri man is charged with forcing his daughter to sleep in a dog crate... More >>
17 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 5:35:10 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — University of Missouri System officials are no longer counting on state funding to help build an... More >>
17 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 5:23:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Two big questions still loom in the case involving a Missouri State Highway Patrol trooper and a man... More >>
17 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 5:21:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers in Linn, St. Robert, and Ellington will close permanently on Saturday, July... More >>
17 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 5:18:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A special task force aimed at evaluating transportation in the state and addressing funding issues met Wednesday... More >>
18 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:58:00 PM CDT in News
CLAYTON (AP) — A jail inmate who escaped from a hospital has been arrested at a mobile home park in... More >>
19 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:20:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County is heading east. 75 county officials will travel to Maryland this fall to train with... More >>
19 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:08:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County sheriff’s detectives arrested a second suspect Wednesday morning in connection with a shooting that wounded two... More >>
20 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 2:50:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Missouri man who spent nearly two decades in mental hospitals after entering a disputed plea... More >>
20 hours ago June 28, 2017 Jun 28, 2017 Wednesday, June 28 2017 Wednesday, June 28, 2017 2:26:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 73°
11am 83°
12pm 84°
1pm 86°
2pm 88°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
Today
11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
10:00a
Jerry Springer
11:00a
Jerry Springer
12:00p
Jerry Springer

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Hollywood Game Night
8:00p
The Wall
9:00p
The Night Shift
7:00p
Supernatural
8:00p
Supernatural
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld