Not Representative

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

There are no women in New Jersey's 15-person congressional delegation. Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women in Politics at Rutgers University, discusses why women seem to have a hard time getting elected in New Jersey. And New Jersey's first (and so far only) female governor, Christine Todd Whitman, weighs in.


Debbie Walsh and Christine Todd Whitman

Comments [7]

mc from Brooklyn

I think the electoral process is made extra unpleasant for women and also for minorities by the fact that if she holds a policy that is opposed by a particular group, somewho they think it's OK to go after her with extra venum. It is as if the opposition is intensified by the fact she is a woman. There was plenty about Sarah Palin to disagree with but the hysteria around her went way over the edge. It makes one suspicious.

Feb. 17 2009 11:53 AM
Kathy from warren NJ

Although CAWP, WAGGS and other NJ groups devoted to getting women into NJ elective office are indeed non-partisan, these groups are inflexible on issues related to abortion. They are pro-choice. A pro-life woman potential candidate, whether Democrat (as am I), Republican, or other, need not apply.

Feb. 17 2009 11:43 AM
Dan from NJ

Part of the problem is that people make an issue of a candidate being a woman. This makes the performance of women in office of great weight in voters' minds.

Since Gov. Whitman was such an unmitigated failure it makes both woman as candidates and voters for women hesitate.

Feb. 17 2009 11:23 AM
John Celardo from Fanwood, NJ

I worked on the Stender campaign, the first I’ve worked on, and was very disappointed that she lost. Linda nearly beat Ferguson in 2 years ago, but was beat soundly be a moderate Republican from Hunterdon County. Linda would have been a great Congresswoman.

Feb. 17 2009 11:18 AM
Keli Dougherty from Wayne, N.J.

In 2003, according to the New Jersey League of Municipalities, there were 66 females mayors out of 566 mayors (11 percent). In 2005, there were 73 women serving as mayors. Local office is usually a stepping stone to state level and national level office.

Feb. 17 2009 11:17 AM
Fred Kahan from Scotch Plains NJ

The loss by Linda Stender in NJ-07 was probably due to her obsessive emphasis on Women's issues against an opponent whose views on these issues were not that different from Linda's. This displaced a much needed emphasis on economic issues and alignment with Obama's platform. The failure of Linda to excite the voter was most evident in the disparity of voting between the Presidential line and the Congressional line.

Feb. 17 2009 11:17 AM
Lance from Manhattan

I don't follow the point the guest was making.
Why should a state that has a more highly-educated and more affluent population be any more likely to have women legislators?

It's not necessary to be highly educated or wealthy to be fair.

Feb. 17 2009 11:11 AM

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