Women in Congress: Statistics and Brief Overview

A record 131 women currently serve in the 116th Congress. There are 106 women serving in the House (including Delegates and the Resident Commissioner), 91 Democrats and 15 Republicans. There are 25 women in the Senate, 17 Democrats and 8 Republicans.

These 131 women surpass the previous record of 115 women at the close of the 115th Congress. The numbers of women serving fluctuated during the 115th Congress; there were 109 women initially sworn in, 5 women subsequently elected to the House, 2 appointed to the Senate, and 1 woman in the House who died in office.

The very first woman elected to Congress was Representative Jeannette Rankin (R-MT, served 1917-1919 and 1941-1943). The first woman to serve in the Senate was Rebecca Latimer Felton (D-GA). She was appointed in 1922 and served for only one day. Hattie Caraway (D-AR, served 1931-1945) was the first Senator to succeed her husband and the first woman elected to a six-year Senate term.

A total of 365 women have ever been elected or appointed to Congress, including 247 Democrats and 118 Republicans. These figures include six nonvoting Delegates (one each from Guam, Hawaii, the District of Columbia, and American Samoa, and two from the U.S. Virgin Islands), as well as one Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico. Of these,

309 (211 Democrats, 98 Republicans) women have been elected only to the House of Representatives;

40 (25 Democrats, 15 Republicans) women have been elected or appointed only to the Senate;

16 (11 Democrats, 5 Republicans) women have served in both houses;

47 African American women have served in Congress (2 in the Senate, 45 in the House), including 25 serving in the 116th Congress;

13 Asian Pacific American women have served in Congress (10 in the House, 1 in the Senate, and 2 in both the House and Senate), including 10 in the 116th Congress;

20 Hispanic women have served in Congress (including 1 in the Senate), including 15 in the 116th Congress; and

2 American Indian women, both currently serving in the House, have served in Congress.

In the 116th Congress, eight women serve as committee chairs (six in the House, two in the Senate).

This report includes historical information, including the number of women in Congress over time; means of entry to Congress; comparisons to international and state legislatures; records for tenure; firsts for women in Congress; women in leadership; African American, Asian Pacific American, Hispanic, and American Indian women in Congress; as well as a brief overview of research questions related to the role and impact of women in Congress. The Appendix provides details on the total number of women who have served in each Congress, including information on changes within a Congress. The numbers in the report may be affected by the time periods used when tallying any particular number. The text and notes throughout the report provide details on time periods used for the tallies and the currency of the information.

For additional biographical information—including the committee assignments, dates of service, listings by Congress and state, and (for Representatives) congressional districts of the 365 women who have been elected or appointed to Congress—see CRS Report RL30261, Women in Congress, 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress, by Jennifer E. Manning and Ida A. Brudnick.

Women in Congress: Statistics and Brief Overview

Updated April 9, 2019 (R43244)
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Contents

Summary

A record 131 women currently serve in the 116th Congress. There are 106 women serving in the House (including Delegates and the Resident Commissioner), 91 Democrats and 15 Republicans. There are 25 women in the Senate, 17 Democrats and 8 Republicans.

These 131 women surpass the previous record of 115 women at the close of the 115th Congress. The numbers of women serving fluctuated during the 115th Congress; there were 109 women initially sworn in, 5 women subsequently elected to the House, 2 appointed to the Senate, and 1 woman in the House who died in office.

The very first woman elected to Congress was Representative Jeannette Rankin (R-MT, served 1917-1919 and 1941-1943). The first woman to serve in the Senate was Rebecca Latimer Felton (D-GA). She was appointed in 1922 and served for only one day. Hattie Caraway (D-AR, served 1931-1945) was the first Senator to succeed her husband and the first woman elected to a six-year Senate term.

A total of 365 women have ever been elected or appointed to Congress, including 247 Democrats and 118 Republicans. These figures include six nonvoting Delegates (one each from Guam, Hawaii, the District of Columbia, and American Samoa, and two from the U.S. Virgin Islands), as well as one Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico. Of these,

  • 309 (211 Democrats, 98 Republicans) women have been elected only to the House of Representatives;
  • 40 (25 Democrats, 15 Republicans) women have been elected or appointed only to the Senate;
  • 16 (11 Democrats, 5 Republicans) women have served in both houses;
  • 47 African American women have served in Congress (2 in the Senate, 45 in the House), including 25 serving in the 116th Congress;
  • 13 Asian Pacific American women have served in Congress (10 in the House, 1 in the Senate, and 2 in both the House and Senate), including 10 in the 116th Congress;
  • 20 Hispanic women have served in Congress (including 1 in the Senate), including 15 in the 116th Congress; and
  • 2 American Indian women, both currently serving in the House, have served in Congress.

In the 116th Congress, eight women serve as committee chairs (six in the House, two in the Senate).

This report includes historical information, including the number of women in Congress over time; means of entry to Congress; comparisons to international and state legislatures; records for tenure; firsts for women in Congress; women in leadership; African American, Asian Pacific American, Hispanic, and American Indian women in Congress; as well as a brief overview of research questions related to the role and impact of women in Congress. The Appendix provides details on the total number of women who have served in each Congress, including information on changes within a Congress. The numbers in the report may be affected by the time periods used when tallying any particular number. The text and notes throughout the report provide details on time periods used for the tallies and the currency of the information.

For additional biographical information—including the committee assignments, dates of service, listings by Congress and state, and (for Representatives) congressional districts of the 365 women who have been elected or appointed to Congress—see CRS Report RL30261, Women in Congress, 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress, by Jennifer E. Manning and Ida A. Brudnick.


Introduction

Including the first woman to serve in 1917, a total of 365 women have been elected or appointed to serve in the U.S. Congress. That first woman was Jeannette Rankin (R-MT), who was elected on November 9, 1916, to the 65th Congress (1917-March 4, 1919).

Table 1 details this service by women in the House, Senate, and both chambers.1

Table 1. Women Members of Congress: Summary Statistics, 1917-Present

(Inclusive through January 3, 2019)

 

Total
Women

Senate Service
Only

House
Service
Only (Representatives)

House
Service
Only
(Delegates and Resident Commissioner)

House Service Only (Subtotal)

Women who have Served in Both Chambers

Total

365a

40

302

7a

309a

16

Democrats

247

25

207

4

211

11

Republicans

118

15

95

3

98

5

Source: U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian and Office of Art and Archives, "Women in Congress," http://history.house.gov/Exhibition-and-Publications/WIC/Women-in-Congress.

Note: The House and Senate totals each include one woman who was elected but never sworn in.

a. The total number of female Members of the House includes one Delegate to the House of Representatives from Hawaii prior to statehood; one from the District of Columbia, Guam, and American Samoa; and two from the U.S. Virgin Islands. The total number also includes one Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico.

The 116th Congress began with 131 women. Table 2 shows that women account for

  • 23.7% of voting Members in the House and Senate (127 of 535);
  • 24.2% of total Members in the House and Senate (131 of 541, including the Delegates and Resident Commissioner);
  • 23.4% of voting Representatives in the House (102 of 435);
  • 24.0% of total Members in the House (106 of 441, including the Delegates and Resident Commissioner); and
  • 25.0% of the Senate.

Table 2. Number of Women Members of the 116th Congress

 

Total
Women

Senators

Representatives

Nonvoting Members (Delegates and Resident Commissioner)

House Subtotal (Representatives and Nonvoting Members)

Total

131

25

102

4

106

Democrats

108

17

89

2

91

Republicans

23

8

13

2

15

Source: U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian and Office of Art and Archives, "Women in Congress," http://history.house.gov/Exhibition-and-Publications/WIC/Women-in-Congress.

Notes: The 116th Congress began with 131 women in the House and Senate (including one Senator who was appointed). Three of the women who serve in the House are Delegates, representing the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and American Samoa. One woman serves as the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico. Information in this table is current as of the date of the report.

This report includes historical information, including the (1) number and percentage of women in Congress over time; (2) means of entry to Congress; (3) comparisons to international and state legislatures; (4) records for tenure; (5) firsts for women in Congress; (6) African American, Asian Pacific, Hispanic American, and American Indian women in Congress; and (7) women in leadership. It also provides a brief overview of research questions related to the role and impact of women in Congress.

For additional biographical information—including the names, committee assignments, dates of service, listings by Congress and state, and (for Representatives) congressional districts of the women who have served in Congress—see CRS Report RL30261, Women in Congress, 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress, by Jennifer E. Manning and Ida A. Brudnick.

Since the 65th Congress (1917-1918), the number of women serving in Congress generally increased incrementally, and on a few occasions, decreased. In an exception to these incremental changes, the elections in 1992, which came to be known popularly as the "Year of the Woman," represented a jump in the number of women in Congress.2 As a result of this 1992 election, whereas the 102nd Congress (1991-1992) concluded with 34 women, on the first day of the 103rd Congress (1993-1994), the number of women in Congress increased 58.8%, to 54 women.3 More recently, the 115th Congress concluded with 115 women, and on the first day of the 116th Congress, the number of women in Congress increased 13.9%, to 131 women.4

Figure 1 shows the changes in the number of women serving in each Congress. For a table listing the total number of women who have served in each Congress, including information on turnover within a Congress, please see Table A-2 in the Appendix.

Figure 1. Number of Women by Congress: 1917-2019

Data for the 116th Congress are for the beginning of the Congress

Source: "Women in the U.S. Congress 2019" and "History of Women in the U.S. Congress," Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University, http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/women-us-congress-2019 and http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/history-women-us-congress. Figure compiled by CRS.

Notes: Delegates and the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico are not included in the data. The fact sheet indicates that data in the "table for Congresses prior to the current one shows maximum number of women elected or appointed to serve in that Congress at one time. Some filled out unexpired terms and some were never sworn in."

Figure 2 shows division of men and women in Congress historically and in the 116th Congress.

Figure 2. Women as a Percentage of Total Members Since 1789 and
in the 116th Congress

Numbers for the 116th Congress are for the beginning of the Congress

Source: House of Representatives, Total Members of the House and State Representation, last Updated January 3, 2019, http://history.house.gov/Institution/Total-Members/Total-Members/. This states: "Since the U.S. Congress convened on March 4, 1789, 12,343 individuals have served as Representatives, Senators, or in both capacities. There have been 10,360 Members who served only as Representatives, 1,305 Members who served only in the Senate, and 677 Members with service in both chambers. The total number of Representatives (including individuals serving in both bodies) is 11,037." See also Senate Historical Office, Senators of the United States, 1789-present, at http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/chronlist.pdf. This information is updated once per Congress.

Notes: The House and Senate totals each include one woman who was elected but never sworn in. Delegates and the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico are not included in the data.

As seen in Figure 3, 49 states (all except Vermont),5 4 territories (American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands), and the District of Columbia have been represented by a woman in Congress at some time since 1917.6

Four states (Alaska, Mississippi, North Dakota, and Vermont) have never elected a woman to the House.

Eighteen states have never been represented by a female Senator. Fourteen states have been represented by one female Senator, 12 have sent two, and 6 states have sent three.

Figure 3. Number of Women in the House and Senate by State, District, or Territory, 1917-Present

Inclusive through January 3, 2019; numbers include Delegates and the Resident Commissioner

Source: CRS summary, based on House of Representatives, Women in Congress, available at http://history.house.gov/Exhibition-and-Publications/WIC/Women-in-Congress/.

Notes: The 16 women who have served in both the House and Senate are counted in each tally. Also counted are one woman from South Carolina (House) and one woman from South Dakota (Senate) who were elected but never sworn in due to the House or Senate being out of session.

How Women Enter Congress: Regular Elections, Special Elections, and Appointments

Pursuant to Article I, Section 2, clause 4 of the U.S. Constitution, all Representatives enter office through election, even those who enter after a seat becomes open during a Congress.7 By contrast, the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution, which was ratified on April 8, 1913, gives state legislatures the option to empower governors to fill Senate vacancies by temporary appointment.8

The 56 women who have served in the Senate entered initially through three different routes:

  • 34 entered through regularly scheduled elections,
  • 17 were appointed to unexpired terms, and
  • 5 were elected by special election.9

As Figure 4 shows, approximately 70% (39) of all women who have served in the Senate initially entered Senate service by winning an election (regular or special). Approximately 30% of women Senators entered the Senate initially through an appointment. Of the 17 women who entered by appointment, 10 served less than one year.

Since the ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution in 1913, nine years prior to the first appointment of a woman to fill a Senate vacancy, 200 Senators have been appointed.10 Of these appointees, 91.5% (183) have been men, and 8.5% (17) were women.11

Figure 4. Women's Initial Entrance to the Senate: Regular Elections, Special Elections, and Appointments to Unexpired Terms

Inclusive through January 3, 2019

Source: Figure compiled by CRS based on descriptions in the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress (http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp).

Women in Congress as Compared with Women in Other Legislative Bodies

International Perspective

The current total percentage of voting female representation in Congress (23.7%) is slightly lower than averages of female representation in other countries. According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), as of January 1, 2019, women represented 24.3% of national legislative seats (both houses) across the entire world. In the IPU database of worldwide female representation, the United States ties for 78th worldwide for women in the lower chamber. The Nordic countries (Sweden, Iceland, Finland, Denmark, and Norway) lead the world regionally with 42.3% female representation in national legislatures.12

State-House Perspective

The percentage of women in Congress also is lower than the percentage of women holding seats in state legislatures. According to the Center for American Women and Politics, in 2019, "2,117, or 28.7% of the 7,383 state legislators in the United States are women. Women currently hold 504, or 25.6%, of the 1,972 state senate seats and 1,613, or 29.8%, of the 5,411 state house or assembly seats."13 Across the 50 states, the total seats held by women range from 13.8% in Mississippi to 50.8% in Nevada.14

Since the beginning of the 92nd Congress (1971-1972), the first Congress for which comparative state legislature data are available,15 the total percentage of women in state legislatures has eclipsed the percentage of women in Congress (see Figure 5). The greatest disparity between the percentages of female voting representation in state legislatures as compared with Congress occurred in the early 1990s, when women comprised 6.0% of the total Congress in the 102nd Congress (1991-1992), but 18.3% of state legislatures in 1991. The gap has since narrowed.

Figure 5. Women in Congress and State Legislatures: 1971-2019

Data for the 116th Congress are for the beginning of the Congress

Source: Data for women legislators as a percentage of total state legislators derived from Fact Sheet, "Women in State Legislatures 2019," and "History of Women in the U.S. Congress," Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University. Figures compiled by CRS.

Notes: Data include upper and lower chambers. Delegates and the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico are not included in the data. The fact sheet for Congress indicates that the "table for Congresses prior to the current one shows maximum number of women elected or appointed to serve in that Congress at one time. Some filled out unexpired terms and some were never sworn in." Data for the 116th Congress are for the beginning of the Congress.

Female Election Firsts in Congress

  • First woman elected to Congress. Representative Jeannette Rankin (R-MT, 1917-1919, 1941-1943).
  • First woman to serve in the Senate. Rebecca Latimer Felton (D-GA) was appointed in 1922 to fill the unexpired term of a Senator who had died in office. In addition to being the first female Senator, Mrs. Felton holds two other Senate records. Her tenure in the Senate remains the shortest ever (one day), and, at the age of 87, she is the oldest person ever to begin Senate service.
  • First woman to succeed her spouse in the Senate and also the first female initially elected to a full six-year term. Hattie Caraway (D-AR, 1931-1945) was first appointed in 1931 to fill the vacancy caused by the death of her husband, Thaddeus H. Caraway (D-AR, House, 1913-1921; Senate, 1921-1931), and then was subsequently elected to two six-year terms.
  • First woman elected to the Senate without having first been appointed to serve in that body and first woman to serve in both houses of Congress. Margaret Chase Smith (R-ME) was elected to the Senate and served from January 3, 1949, until January 3, 1973. She had previously served in the House (June 3, 1940, to January 3, 1949).
  • First woman elected to the Senate without first having been elected to the House or having been elected or appointed to fill an unexpired Senate term. Nancy Landon Kassebaum (R-KS, 1979-1997).
  • First woman elected Speaker of the House. As Speaker of the House in the 110th and 111th Congresses (2007-2010), Nancy Pelosi held the highest position of leadership ever by a woman in the U.S. government. She was elected Speaker again at the beginning of the 116th Congress.

Records for Length of Service

  • Longest total length of service by a woman in Congress. Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), who served from January 3, 1977, to January 3, 2017, holds this record (40 years, 10 of which were spent in the House). On March 17, 2012, Senator Mikulski surpassed the record previously held by Edith Nourse Rogers (R-MA).
  • Longest length of service by a woman in the House. On March 18, 2018, currently serving Representative Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) surpassed the record previously held by Representative Rogers. Representative Kaptur has been serving in the House since January 3, 1983 (36 years). Representative Rogers served in the House for 35 years, from June 25, 1925, until her death on September 10, 1960.
  • Longest length of service by a woman in the Senate. Senator Mikulski also holds the record for length of Senate service by a woman (30 years). In January 2011, she broke the service record previously held by Senator Margaret Chase Smith (R-ME), who served 24 years in the Senate and 8.6 years in the House.

Women Who Have Served in Both Houses

Sixteen women have served in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

Margaret Chase Smith (R-ME) was the first such woman, as well as the first woman elected to the Senate without first having been elected or appointed to fill a vacant Senate seat. She was first elected to the House to fill the vacancy caused by the death of her husband (Clyde Smith, R-ME, 1937-1940), and she served from June 10, 1940, until January 3, 1949, when she began her Senate service. She served in the Senate until January 3, 1973.

African American Women in Congress

Twenty-five African American women serve in the 116th Congress, including 2 Delegates, a record number. The previous record number was 21, including 2 Delegates, serving at the end of the 115th Congress.

A total of 47 African American women have served in Congress.16 The first was Representative Shirley Chisholm (D-NY, 1969-1983). Senator Carol Moseley-Braun (D-IL, 1993-1999) was the first African American woman to have served in the Senate. The African American women Members of the 116th Congress are listed in Table 3.

Table 3. African American Women in the 116th Congress

(All are House Members except for Sen. Kamala Harris)

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA)

Alma Adams (D-NC)

Karen Bass (D-CA)

Joyce Beatty (D-OH)

Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE)

Yvette Clarke (D-NY)

Val Demings (D-FL)

Marcia Fudge (D-OH)

Jahana Hayes (D-CT)

Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX)

Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)

Robin Kelly (D-IL)

Brenda Lawrence (D-MI)

Barbara Lee (D-CA)

Lucy McBath (D-GA)

Gwen Moore (D-WI)

Ilhan Omar (D-MN)

Ayana Pressley (D-MA)

Terri Sewell (D-AL)

Lauren Underwood (D-IL)

Maxine Waters (D-CA)

Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ)

Frederica Wilson (D-FL)

Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) [Delegate]

Stacey Plaskett (D-VI) [Delegate]

Source: U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-of-Color-in-Congress/.

Note: Sen. Kamala Harris is also Asian Pacific American, and she is counted in both categories.

Asian Pacific American Women in Congress

Ten Asian Pacific American women serve in the 116th Congress.17 Patsy Mink (D-HI), who served in the House from 1965-1977 and again from 1990-2002, was the first of 13 Asian Pacific American women to serve in Congress. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) is the first Asian Pacific American woman to serve in both the House and Senate.

Table 4. Asian Pacific American Women in the 116th Congress

(All House Members except for Sens. Duckworth, Harris, and Hirono)

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)

Judy Chu (D-CA)

Doris O. Matsui (D-CA)

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA)

Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)

Grace Meng (D-NY)

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI)

Pramila Jayapal (D-WA)

Stephanie Murphy (D-FL)

 

 

Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R-AS) [Delegate]

Source: U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-of-Color-in-Congress/ and http://history.house.gov/apa/.

Note: Sen. Kamala Harris is also African American, and is counted in both categories.

Hispanic Women in Congress

Twenty Hispanic or Latino women have served in Congress, all but one in the House, and 15 of them, a record number, serve in the 116th Congress. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL, 1989-2018) is the first Hispanic woman to serve in Congress, and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV, 2017-present) is the first Hispanic woman Senator.18

Table 5. Hispanic Women in the 116th Congress

(All are House Members except for Sen. Cortez Masto)

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)

Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-CA)

Veronica Escobar (D-TX)

Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D-FL)

Linda Sánchez (D-CA)

Norma Torres (D-CA)

 

Sylvia Garcia (D-TX)

Jennifer González-Colon (R-PR) [Resident Commissioner]

Grace Flores Napolitano (D-CA)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY)

Xochitl Torres Small (D-NM)

Lori Trahan (D-MA)

 

Jamie Herrera Beutler (R-WA)

Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA)

Nydia Velázquez (D-NY)

American Indian (Native American) Women in Congress

Representatives Sharice Davids (D-KS) and Deb Haaland (D-NM), both first elected to the 116th Congress, are the first female enrolled members of federally recognized tribes to serve in Congress.

Women Who Have Served in Party Leadership Positions19

A number of women in Congress, listed in Table 6, have held positions in their party's leadership.20 House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) holds the highest position of leadership in the U.S. government ever held by a woman. As Speaker of the House in the 116th Congress, she is second in the line of succession for the presidency. She also served as Speaker in the 110th and 111th Congresses. In the 108th, 109th, and 112th-115th Congresses, she was elected the House Democratic leader. Previously, Representative Pelosi was elected House Democratic whip, in the 107th Congress, on October 10, 2001, effective January 15, 2002. She was also the first woman nominated to be Speaker of the House. Senator Margaret Chase Smith (R-ME), chair of the Senate Republican Conference from 1967 to 1972, holds the Senate record for the highest, as well as first, leadership position held by a female Senator. The first woman Member to be elected to any party leadership position was Chase Going Woodhouse (D-CT), who served as House Democratic Caucus Secretary in the 81st Congress (1949-1950).

Table 6. Selected Congressional Party Leadership Positions Held by Women

Position

Member

Congresses

Speaker of the House

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

110th-111th, 116th (2007-2010, 2019-present)

House Democratic Leader

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

108th-109th, 112th-115th (2003-2006, 2011-2018)

House Democratic Whip

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

107th (2001-2002)

Chief Deputy Democratic Whip

Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ)

Terri Sewell (D-AL)

Diana DeGette (D-CO)

Janice Schakowsky (D-IL)

Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL)

Maxine Waters (D-CA)

114th-115th (2015-2018)

113th-116th (2013-present)

112th-115th (2011-2018)

112th-116th (2011-present)

112th-116th (2011-present)

106th-110th (1999-2008)

House Democratic Caucus Vice Chair

Katherine Clark (D-MA)

Linda Sánchez (D-CA) Barbara Kennelly (D-CT Mary Rose Oakar (D-OH)

116th (2019-present)

115th (2017-2018)

104th-105th (1995-1998)

100th (1987-1988)

House Democratic Caucus Secretarya

Mary Rose Oakar (D-OH)

Geraldine Ferraro (D-NY)

Shirley Chisholm (D-NY)

Patsy Mink (D-HI)

Leonor Kretzer Sullivan (D-MO)

Edna Flannery Kelly (D-NY)

Chase Going Woodhouse (D-CT)

99th (1985-1986)

97th-98th (1981-1984)

95th-96th (1977-1980)

94th (1975-1976)

86th-87th (1959-1962), 88th, 2nd session-93rd (1964-1974)

83rd-84th (1953-1956), 88th, 1st session (1963)

81st (1949-1950)

House Republican Conference Chair

Liz Cheney (R-WY)

Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA)

Deborah Pryce (R-OH)

116th (2019-present)

113th-115th (2013-2018)

108th-109th (2003-2006)

House Republican Conference Vice Chair

Lynn Jenkins (R-KS)

Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA)

Deborah Pryce (R-OH)

Kay Granger (R-TX)

Tillie Fowler (R-FL)

Jennifer Dunn (R-WA)

Susan Molinari (R-NY)

Lynn Martin (R-IL)

113th-114th (2013-2016)

111th-112th (2009-2012)

107th (2001-2002)

110th (2007-2008)

106th (1999-2000)

105th (1997-1998)

104th-105th (1995-Aug. 1997)

99th-100th (1985-1988)

House Republican Conference Secretary

Virginia Foxx (R-NC)

Barbara Cubin (R-WY)

Deborah Pryce (R-OH)

Barbara Vucanovich (R-NV)

113th-114th (2013-2016)

107th (2001-2002)

106th (1999-2000)

104th (1995-1996)

Senate Republican Conference Chair

Margaret Chase Smith (R-ME)

90th-92nd (1967-1972)

Senate Republican Conference Vice Chairb

Joni Ernst (R-IA)

Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX)

116th (2019-present)

111th (2009-2010)

107th-109th (2001-2006)

Assistant Democratic Leader

Senate Democratic Conference Vice Chair

Patty Murray (D-WA)

Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

116th (2019-present)

115th-116th (2017-present)

Senate Democratic Conference Secretary

Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)

Patty Murray (D-WA)

Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)

Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)

115th-116th (2017-present)

110th-114th (2007-2016)

109th (2005-2006)

104th-108th (1995-2004)

Senate Chief Deputy Democratic Whip

Barbara Boxer (D-CA)

110th-114th (2007-2016)

Source: U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, "Women in Party Leadership Positions, 1949-Present." http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-Elected-to-Party-Leadership/, and CRS Report RL30567, Party Leaders in the United States Congress, 1789-2017, by Valerie Heitshusen.

a. The title of this position changed from "Secretary" to "Vice Chair" with the 100th Congress.

b. This position was previously known as the Conference Secretary.

Women and Leadership of Congressional Committees

As chair of the House Expenditures in the Post Office Department Committee (67th-68th Congresses), Mae Ella Nolan was the first woman to chair any congressional committee. As chair of the Senate Enrolled Bills Committee (73rd-78th Congresses), Hattie Caraway was the first woman to chair a Senate committee. In total,

  • 26 women have chaired a House committee (including select committees);
  • 14 women have chaired a Senate committee (including select committees);
  • 1 female Senator has chaired two joint committees (related to her service on a standing committee); and
  • 2 female Representatives have chaired a joint committee.21

In the 116th Congress, there are currently nine committees led by women: five standing committees in the House, one standing committee in the Senate, one select committee in the House, one select committee in the Senate, and one joint committee.

Table 7. Committees Chaired by Women, 116th Congress

Committee

Chair

House Committee on Appropriations

Nita Lowey (D-NY)

House Committee on Financial Services

Maxine Waters (D-FL)

House Committee on House Administration

Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)

House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology

Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)

House Committee on Small Business

Nydia Velázquez (D-NY)

House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis

Kathy Castor (D-FL)

Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources

Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

Senate Special Committee on Aging

Joint Committee on Printing

Susan Collins (R-ME)

Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)

Source: "Women Who Have Chaired Congressional Committees in the U.S. House, 1923-present" table of the Women in Congress website at http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-Chairs-of-Congressional-Committees/; and the "Committee Assignments of the 116th Congress" website at http://www.senate.gov/general/committee_assignments/assignments.htm.

Pursuant to H.Res. 6 (116th Congress), the Speaker of the House appoints members to the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.

Women in Congress: Examinations of their Role and Impact

As the number of women in Congress has increased in recent decades, and following the large increase in women following the 1992 elections in particular, numerous studies of Congress have examined the role and impact of these women.

Central to these studies have been questions about the following:

  • The legislative behavior of women in Congress, including whether the legislative behavior of female Members differs from their male counterparts. For example, what has the increase in women in Congress meant for descriptive representation (i.e., when representatives and those represented share demographic characteristics, such as representation of women by women) and substantive representation (i.e., representation of policy preferences and a linkage to policy outcomes)?22 This also includes examinations of whether women Members sponsor more "women's issues bills"23 or speak more frequently on the House floor about women.24 These examinations also include questions regarding whether there are any differences in roll call voting behavior between men and women Members of Congress, with a focus on successive Members in the same district, in the same party, or in the chamber overall.25
  • The "effectiveness" of female legislators, particularly in comparison to male legislators. These studies have examined bill sponsorship and cosponsorship; women's success in shepherding sponsored bills or amendments into law; committee work; success in securing federal funds; consensus building activities and efforts to form coalitions; effectiveness while in the majority and minority; and their impact on the institution overall.26
  • The path that leads women to run for office, comparative success rates of female compared with male candidates, and career trajectory once in Congress.27 This includes professional backgrounds and experience, barriers to entry, and fundraising;28 the so-called widow effect, in which many women first secured entry to Congress following the death of a spouse;29 and reelection efforts and influences on decisions regarding voluntary retirement or pursuing other office.30
Appendix. Total Number of Women Who Served in Each Congress

Table A-1. Congressional Service by Women: By Type and Congress, 1917-2019

(Including any Representatives (Reps.), Delegates (Del.), and Resident Commissioners (RC)
who served only a portion of the Congress)

Congress

Reps.

Nonvoting Members (Del. and RC)

House
Subtotal
(Reps and Nonvoting Members)

Sens.

Total without
Nonvoting
Members

Total
with
Nonvoting
Members

65th (1917-1918)

1

0

1

0

1

1

66th (1919-1920)

0

0

0

0

0

0

67th (1921-1922)a

3

0

3

1

4

4

68th (1923-1924)

1

0

1

0

1

1

69th (1925-1926)b

3

0

3

0

3

3

70th (1927-1928)c

5

0

5

0

5

5

71st (1929-1930)

9

0

9

0

9

9

72nd (1931-1932)d

7

0

7

1

8

8

73rd (1933-1934)

7

0

7

1

8

8

74th (1935-1936)

6

0

6

2

8

8

75th (1937-1938)e

6

0

6

3

9

9

76th (1939-1940)f

8

0

8

1

9

9

77th (1941-1942)b

9

0

9

1

10

10

78th (1943-1944)c

8

0

8

1

9

9

79th (1945-1946)b

11

0

11

0

11

11

80th (1947-1948)g

7

0

7

1

8

8

81st (1949-1950)c

9

0

9

1

10

10

82nd (1951-1952)b

10

0

10

1

11

11

83rd (1953-1954)h

11

1

12

3

14

15

84th (1955-1956)c

16

1

17

1

17

18

85th (1957-1958)

15

0

15

1

16

16

86th (1959-1960)i

17

0

17

2

19

19

87th (1961-1962)j

18

0

18

2

20

20

88th (1963-1964)c

12

0

12

2

14

14

89th (1965-1966)

11

0

11

2

13

13

90th (1967-1968)

11

0

11

1

12

12

91st (1969-1970)

10

0

10

1

11

11

92nd (1971-1972)k

13

0

13

2

15

15

93rd (1973-1974)b

16

0

16

0

16

16

94th (1975-1976)

19

0

19

0

19

19

95th (1977-1978)l

18

0

18

3

21

21

96th (1979-1980)m

16

0

16

2

18

18

97th (1981-1982)n

21

0

21

2

23

23

98th (1983-1984)c

22

0

22

2

24

24

99th (1985-1986)c

23

0

23

2

25

25

100th (1987-1988)o

24

0

24

2

26

26

101st (1989-1990)p

29

0

29

2

31

31

102nd (1991-1992)q

29

1

30

4

33

34

103rd (1993-1994)r

47

1

48

7

54

55

104th (1995-1996)k

49

1

50

9

58

59

105th (1997-1998)s

55

2

57

9

64

66

106th (1999-2000)

56

2

58

9

65

67

107th (2001-2002)t

60

2

62

14

74

76

108th (2003-2004)c

60

3

63

14

74

77

109th (2005-2006)u

68

3

71

14

82

85

110th (2007-2008)v

76

3

79

16

92

95

111th (2009-2010)w

76

3

79

17

93

96

112th (2011-2012)x

76

3

79

17

93

96

113th (2013-2014)y

81

3

84

20

101

104

114th (2015-2016)z

85

4

89

20

105

109

115th (2017-2018)aa

88

5

93

23

111

116

116th (2019-2020)

102

4

106

25

127

131

Source: CRS summary, based on http://history.house.gov/Exhibition-and-Publications/WIC/Women-in-Congress/.

Notes: The column headings include the following abbreviations: Representatives (Reps.), Delegates (Del.), Resident Commissioners (RC), and Senators (Sens.).

Three columns include numbers for the House: (1) the number of women Representatives, (2) the number of women nonvoting Members (including Delegates and Resident Commissioners), and (3) the total number of women in the House.

Totals are also provided for (1) the number of women in the House and Senate not including nonvoting Members and (2) the number of women in the House and Senate including nonvoting Members.

For simplification, Congresses are listed in two-year increments. Pursuant to the 20th Amendment to the Constitution, which was ratified January 23, 1933, "the terms of Senators and Representatives [shall end] at noon on the 3rd day of Jan." For specific dates, see "Dates of Sessions of the Congress, present-1789," at http://www.senate.gov/reference/Sessions/sessionDates.htm.

a. Includes two House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy and one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy.

b. Includes two House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

c. Includes one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy.

d. Includes one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy and one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy.

e. Includes one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy but not sworn in, one Senator who was elected to fill a vacancy but not sworn in, and one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy.

f. Includes four House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

g. Includes one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy.

h. Includes one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy, one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy, and one Senator who was elected to fill that vacancy.

i. Includes one House Member who died and one House Member elected to fill a vacancy.

j. Includes three House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

k. Includes one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy and one Senator appointed to fill a vacancy.

l. Includes two Senators who were appointed to fill a vacancy.

m. Includes one House Member-elect whose seat was declared vacant due to an incapacitating illness, and one House member who was elected to fill a vacancy.

n. Includes three House Members who were elected to a vacancy.

o. Includes one House Member who died.

p. Includes four House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

q. Includes one House Member and one Senator elected to fill a vacancy and one Senator who was appointed to fill a vacancy.

r. Includes one Senator who was elected to fill a vacancy.

s. Includes one House Member who resigned and four House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

t. Includes one House Member who died and one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy and two appointed Senators.

u. Includes three House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

v. Includes four House Members who died and five House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

w. Includes two House Members who resigned, one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy, one Senator who resigned, and one Senator initially elected to the House and then appointed to the Senate.

x. Includes two House Members who resigned and four House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

y. Includes one House Member who resigned and three House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy.

z. Includes two House Members who resigned and one House Member who was elected to fill a vacancy.

aa. Includes five House Members elected to fill a vacancy, one House Member who died, one House Member who resigned, and two Senators appointed to fill a vacancy.

Table A-2. Number of Women Sworn in on the First Day of Congress

Total (T), House of Representatives (H), and Senate (S); since the 102nd Congress

 

102

103

104

105

106

107

108

109

110

111

112

113

114

115

116

T

31

54

56

62

67

74

76

82

90

95

92

101

108

109

131

H

29

48

48

53

58

61

62

68

74

78

75

81

88

88

106

S

2

6

8

9

9

13

14

14

16

17

17

20

20

21

25

Source: CRS calculations based on descriptions in the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress (http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp).

Note: Includes Senators, Representatives, Delegates, and the Resident Commissioner.

Author Contact Information

Jennifer E. Manning, Information Research Specialist ([email address scrubbed], [phone number scrubbed])
Ida A. Brudnick, Specialist on the Congress ([email address scrubbed], [phone number scrubbed])

Acknowledgments

Linda Carter, Elli Ludwigson, and Cara Warner provided assistance. Colleen J. Shogan, formerly deputy director and senior specialist, and Susan Navarro Smelcer, formerly an analyst on the Federal Judiciary, were former coauthors of this report.

Footnotes

1.

Throughout this report, House and Senate totals each include one woman elected but not sworn in or seated due to the House or Senate being out of session. Both women are included in various official congressional publications, including, for example, the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress (http://bioguide.congress.gov), "Women in Congress" (http://history.house.gov/Exhibition-and-Publications/WIC/Women-in-Congress), and "Senators of the United States 1789-present: a chronological list of senators since the First Congress in 1789," maintained by the Senate Historical Office (http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/chronlist.pdf).

2.

The Year of the Woman: Myths and Realities, ed. Elizabeth Adell Cook, Sue Thomas, and Clyde Wilcox (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1994).

3.

The 102nd Congress final-day total includes three women who were not present at the start of the Congress (one House Member and one Senator elected to fill a vacancy and one Senator appointed to fill a vacancy). The 103rd Congress first-day total does not include one woman who was not present at the start of the Congress (a Senator who was elected to fill a vacancy).

4.

The 115th Congress final-day total includes seven women who were not present at the start of the Congress (five House Members who were elected to fill a vacancy and two Senators who were appointed to fill a vacancy) and one House Member who resigned on December 31, 2018. It excludes one House Member who died in office during the Congress.

5.

Vermont, however, ranks fifth for percentage of women in state government. For additional information, see the "State-House Perspective" section.

6.

Totals include one woman from South Carolina (House) and one woman from South Dakota (Senate) elected but never sworn in due to the House or Senate being out of session.

7.

"[W]hen vacancies happen in the Representation from any State, the Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies." Article I, Section 2, clause 4 of the U.S. Constitution.

8.

Prior to the ratification of this amendment, Senators were chosen pursuant to Article I, Section 3, of the Constitution. For additional information, see Direct Election of Senators, at http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/Direct_Election_Senators.htm.

9.

This includes one woman who was elected but never sworn in.

10.

"Appointed Senators" list available at http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/senators_appointed.htm.

11.

Total number of Senators since January 1, 1913, was derived from the Senate's "Senators of the United States 1789-present: A chronological list of senators since the First Congress in 1789," available at http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/chronlist.pdf. Senators are listed by date of initial service. Members who served nonconsecutive terms are counted once.

12.

Inter-Parliamentary Union, Women in National Parliaments, situation as of 1st December 2018, at http://www.ipu.org/wmn-e/world.htm. See also the archive of historical data at http://www.ipu.org/wmn-e/world-arc.htm. This data will be updated once per Congress. For statistics on women serving in the national legislatures of 193 countries, see the IPU chart at http://www.ipu.org/wmn-e/classif.htm; see also, Frank C. Thames and Margaret S. Williams, Contagious Representation: Women's Political Representation in Democracies around the World (New York University Press: New York, 2013).

13.

Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University, Women in State Legislatures 2019, at http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/women-state-legislature-2019.

14.

Ibid.

15.

The Center for American Women and Politics provides data for state legislatures for odd-numbered years. Congressional data show the maximum number of women elected or appointed to serve in a Congress at one time during that Congress.

16.

This number includes one Senator, Kamala Harris, who is of African American and Asian ancestry. In this report, this Senator is counted as belonging to two ethnic groups. For additional information, see U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, Black Americans in Congress, at http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/BAIC/Black-Americans-in-Congress/, and Asian and Pacific Islander Americans in Congress at http://history.house.gov/apa/.

17.

This number includes one Senator, Kamala Harris, who is of African American and Asian ancestry. In this report, this Senator is counted as belonging to two ethnic groups.

18.

For additional information, see U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, Hispanic Americans in Congress, at http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/HAIC/Hispanic-Americans-in-Congress/.

19.

For additional information, refer to CRS Report RL30567, Party Leaders in the United States Congress, 1789-2017, by Valerie Heitshusen. Limited information on the leadership positions held by women in Congress can also be found in CRS Report RL30261, Women in Congress, 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress, by Jennifer E. Manning and Ida A. Brudnick.

20.

U.S. Congress, House, Office of the Historian, "Women Elected to Party Leadership Positions, 1949–Present," http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-Elected-to-Party-Leadership/.

21.

Totals include standing, special, and select committees. Some women have chaired multiple committees. For additional information, refer to the "Women Who Have Chaired Congressional Committees in the U.S. House, 1923-present" table of the Women in Congress website, at http://history.house.gov/Exhibitions-and-Publications/WIC/Historical-Data/Women-Chairs-of-Congressional-Committees/.

22.

The idea of "representation," including its forms and variations, has long been debated among political scientists and political theorists. For a discussion, see Hanna F. Pitkin, The Concept of Representation (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1967).

23.

Studies characterize "women's issues" differently, and there is no universally accepted definition. See Beth Reingold, "Women as Office Holders: Descriptive and Substantive Representation," paper presented at the Political Women and American Democracy Conference, University of Notre Dame, May 25-27, 2006, p. 6; Victoria A. Rickard, "The Effects of Gender on Winnowing in the U.S. House of Representatives," Politics & Gender, vol. 12 (2016), 814-816.

24.

See, for example, Mary Hawkesworth, Kathleen Casey, Krista Jenkins, and Katherine Kleeman, Legislating By and For Women: A Comparison of the 103rd and 104th Congresses, Center for American Women and Politics, 2001, available at http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/research/topics/documents/CongReport103-104.pdf; Kathryn Pearson and Logan Dancey, "Elevating Women's Voices in Congress: Speech Participation in the House of Representatives," Political Research Quarterly, vol. 64 (December 2011), pp. 910-923; Kathryn Pearson and Logan Dancey, "Speaking for the Underrepresented in the House of Representatives: Voicing Women's Interests in a Partisan Era," Politics & Gender, vol. 7 (December 2011), pp. 493-519; Kelly Dittmar, Kira Sanbonmatsu, Susan J. Carroll, Debbie Walsh, and Catherine Wineinger, "Representation Matters: Women in the U.S. Congress," New Brunswick, NJ: Center for American Women in Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (2017).

25.

See, for example, Michele L. Swers, The Difference Women Make: The Policy Impact of Women in Congress (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002); Katherine Cramer Walsh, "Enlarging Representation: Women Bring Marginalized Perspectives to Floor Debate in the House of Representatives," in Women Transforming Congress, ed. Cindy Simon Rosenthal (Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 2002), pp. 370-396. Jessica C. Gerrity, Tracy Osborn, and Jeannette Morehouse Mendez, "Women and Representation: A Different View of the District?" Politics & Gender, vol. 3 (June 2007), pp. 179-200. Jennifer Sacco, 2012, "Descriptive Representation of Men and Women in the 110th and 111th Congresses," paper presented at the Western Political Science Association Annual Meeting. http://wpsa.research.pdx.edu/meet/2012/sacco.pdf. Jocelyn Jones Evans, Women, Partisanship and the Congress (New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2005). Michele L. Swers, "Are Women More Likely to Vote For Women's Issue Bills than Their Male Colleagues?" Legislative Studies Quarterly, vol. 23 (1995), pp. 435-448. Brian Frederick, "Are Female House Members Still More Liberal in a Polarized Era? The Conditional Nature of the Relationship Between Descriptive and Substantive Representation," Congress & the Presidency, vol. 36 (2009), pp. 181-202. Dennis Simon, "The Roll Call Behavior of Men and Women in the U.S. House of Representatives, 1937-2008," Politics & Gender, vol. 6 (June 2010), pp. 225-246. Brian Frederick, "Gender and Roll Call Voting Behavior in Congress: A Cross-Chamber Analysis," The American Review of Politics, vol. 34 (Spring 2013), pp. 1-20.

26.

See, for example, Cindy Simon Rosenthal, "A View of Their Own: Women's Committee Leadership Styles and State Legislatures," Policy Studies Journal, vol. 25 (1997), pp. 585-600; Noelle Norton, "Transforming Policy from the Inside: Participation in Committee," in Women Transforming Congress, ed. Cindy Simon Rosenthal (Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 2002), pp. 316-340; Michele L. Swers, The Difference Women Make (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002); Laura W. Arnold and Barbara M. King, "Women, Committees, and Institutional Change in the Senate," in Women Transforming Congress, ed. Cindy Simon Rosenthal (Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 2002), pp. 284-315; Alana Jeydel and Andrew J. Taylor, "Are Women Legislators Less Effective? Evidence from the U.S. House in the 103rd-105th Congress," Political Research Quarterly, vol. 56 (March 2003), pp. 19-27; Debra Dodson, The Impact of Women in Congress (New York: Oxford University Press, 2006); Sarah Anzia and Christopher Berry, "The Jackie (and Jill) Robinson Effect: Why Do Congresswomen Outperform Congressmen?" American Journal of Political Science, vol. 55 (July 2011), pp. 478-493; Craig Volden, Alan Wiseman, and Dana Wittmer, "When Are Women More Effective Lawmakers Than Men?" American Journal of Political Science, April, 2013, pp. 326-341, available at http://batten.virginia.edu/research/when-are-women-more-effective-lawmakers-men and Stella M. Rouse, Michele L. Swers, and Michael D. Parrott, "Gender, Race, and Coalition Building: Agenda Setting as a Mechanism for Collaboration Among Minority Groups in Congress," paper delivered for presentation at the American Political Science Association Meeting, August 28-September 1, 2013; Tali Mendelberg, Christopher F. Karpowitz and Nicholas Goedert, "Does Descriptive Representation Facilitate Women's Distinctive Voice? How Gender Composition and Decision Rules Affect Deliberation," American Journal of Political Science, vol. 58, no. 2 (April 2014), pp. 291-306; Victoria A. Rickard, "The Effects of Gender on Winnowing in the U.S. House of Representatives," Politics & Gender, vol. 12 (2016), pp. 807-834.

27.

See, for example, Jennifer Lawless and Kathyrn Pearson, "The Primary Reason for Women's Underrepresentation? Reevaluating the Conventional Wisdom," Journal of Politics, vol. 70 (2008), pp. 67-82; Richard L. Fox and Jennifer L. Lawless, "Gendered Perceptions and Political Candidacies: A Central Barrier to Women's Equality in Electoral Politics," American Journal of Political Science, vol. 55, no. 1 (January 2011), pp. 59-73; Kathryn Pearson and Eric McGhee, "What It Takes to Win: Questioning 'Gender Neutral' Outcomes," Politics & Gender, vol. 9 (2013), pp. 439-462; Daniell M. Thomsen, "Why So Few (Republican) Women? Explaining the Partisan Imbalance of Women in the U.S. Congress," Legislative Studies Quarterly, vol. 40, no. 2 (May 2015), pp. 295-423.

28.

See, for example, Ashley Baker, "Reexamining the gender implications of campaign finance reform: how higher ceilings on individual donations disproportionately impact female candidates," Modern American, vol. 2 (2006), pp. 18-23; Michael H. Crespin and Janna L. Deitz, "If You Can't Join 'Em, Beat 'Em: The Gender Gap in Individual Donations to Congressional Candidates," Political Research Quarterly, vol. 63, no. 3 (September 2010), pp. 581-593; Karin E. Kitchens and Michele L. Swers, "Why Aren't There More Republican Women in Congress? Gender, Partisanship, and Fundraising Support in the 2010 and 2012 Elections," Politics & Gender, vol. 12 (2016), pp. 648-676.

29.

See, for example, Diane D. Kincaid, "Over His Dead Body: A Positive Perspective on Widows in the U.S. Congress," The Western Political Quarterly, vol. 31, no. 1 (Mar., 1978), pp. 96-104; Lisa Solowiej and Thomas L. Brunell, "The Entrance of Women to the U.S. Congress: The Widow Effect," Political Research Quarterly, vol. 56, no. 3 (September 2003), pp. 283-292; and Danielle Lupton, Sahar Parsa, and Steven Sprick Schuster, "Widows, Congressional Representation, and the (Ms.)Appropriation of a Name," unpublished manuscript, November 5, 2017.

30.

See, for example, Jennifer L. Lawless and Sean M. Theriault, "Will She Stay or Will She Go? Career Ceilings and Women's Retirement from the U.S. Congress," Legislative Studies Quarterly, vol. 30 (November 2005), pp. 581-596; Jeffrey Lazarus and Amy Steigerwalt, Gendered Vulnerability: How Women Work Harder to Stay in Office (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2018).