Who Will Run in 2016? Gender Bias in Potential Political Candidacy

University of Brigham Young Capstone Conference. Posted by Cynthia Terrell on April 06, 2016

By Emily Thorn Brigham Young University Capstone Conference

The United States is arguably the most developed nation in the world with the most influential economy, the most powerful military, and the longest standing unbroken democratic tradition. So why is it, that when it comes to gender equality in the political spectrum, America is so far behind? The United States is currently ranked 90th among countries in the world in terms of women’s representation in government (Sedghi).. The United States is also well behind many nations, like Great Britain and Germany, by never electing a woman into executive office. Currently women make up approximately 51% of the population of the United States (Representation 2020). Despite these statistics, women only comprise 18% of Congress, 24% of State Legislators, and 10% of Governors (Representation 2020). Cynthia Terrell, chair of Fair Vote’s “Represent 2020” project estimates that at current rates, “women will not achieve fair representation for nearly 500 years.” Rumors have began to circulate around potential female candidates running for president in the coming 2016 presidential election. I believe the question for American citizens to answer is not whether they are ready for Hilary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren, but rather are they ready for a female in that type of leadership role?

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