Why the female Anthony Weiner may not exist

13 Jun

It would be easy to file this under the category of “men behaving badly,” to dismiss it as a testosterone-induced, hard-wired connection between sex and power (powerful men attract women, powerful women repel men). And some might conclude that busy working women don’t have time to cheat. (“While I’m at home changing diapers, I just couldn’t conceive of it,” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, the New York Democrat, once said.)

But there may be something else at work: Research points to a substantial gender gap in the way women and men approach running for office. Women have different reasons for running, are more reluctant to do so and, because there are so few of them in politics, are acutely aware of the scrutiny they draw — all of which seems to lead to differences in the way they handle their jobs once elected.

When It Comes to Scandal, Girls Won’t Be Boys

One Response to “Why the female Anthony Weiner may not exist”

  1. Rachel Piazza June 13, 2011 at 1:34 pm #

    This scandal continues to bring to light the chauvinistic atmosphere that dominates the halls of Congress. It is now clear that women serving in Congress are acutely aware of this and don’t always feel welcome or comfortable. Pennsylvania Congresswoman Allyson Y. Schwartz testifies to this in the New York Times article you’ve linked to. It reads, “Ms. Schwartz is the only female member of her state’s Congressional delegation, and she says that her Pennsylvania colleagues joke and talk in a different way when she is in the room.” We’ve all been there, being made to feel like an outsider, disrupting the boys club. That sort of atmosphere in Congress has to stop. If we want equal representation in Congress, women need to feel like they belong. Weinergate has brought to light the necessity for electing more women to Congress, yet has suggested perhaps one of the reasons why this task is so difficult.

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