Thursday, June 5, 2008

Barbara Lee on Hemlines, Husbands, and Hair

NCRW Plenary - Post #2

Among her many other projects and accomplishments, Barbara Lee, of the Barbara Lee Family Foundation, helped the Center for American Women and Politics with a study on women as governors. Snippets from Lee:
“Whether it’s for President or governor, it is the highest glass ceiling of all. Ann Richards once said of media coverage of women: ‘If you’re single, you couldn’t get a man. If you’re divorced, you couldn’t keep a man. If you’re a widow, you’ve killed a man.’ The same holds true with women candidates.

The White House Project was created to create a climate of acceptance for women running for office. Our most recent study asked voters to rate incumbent women governors. Voters rate women govs higher than male counterparts on managing a crisis, problem-solving, and getting things done. Once they’ve seen the women in action, they like them. But the hard part is getting them elected.

Women still face double burdens—they must be viewed as both likeable and capable. Voters tend to meld these qualities for men. Women must prove that they’re qualified whereas men are just assumed to be. Everything about a woman candidate has to be 'just right'—her hair, her husband, her hemline.”
Headbands, Monica, Cleavage-gate anyone?

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