Report: Pennsylvania women legislators ‘few but mighty’

Written by Marie Cusick

Pennsylvania’s women legislators are more likely to work across party lines, get co-sponsors for bills, and get those measures signed into law, according to an analysis from the Pennsylvania Center for Women and Politics at Chatham University.

Center director Dana Brown says the findings are in line with other research about women legislators at the national level.

“We are not necessarily saying women legislators are better,” says Brown. “It’s just that from the point of measurement, we can say women legislators are more effective.”

The report analyzes bills in Pennsylvania’s 2013-2014 legislative session. Nationally, women make up 51 percent of the population but only hold 19 percent of seats in Congress. The underrepresentation is worse in Pennsylvania, which ranks 39th among states for the percentage of seats held by women.


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