The Gender Effect

In a comment related to the Cathy v. Mark post, Bill Simon asks the following:

Regarding the “neutralizing” of the South Georgia effect on both Cathy and Mark, one item that we really don’t know about is the “gender effect” on whether South Georgia Democrats will go for a female gubernatorial candidate.

Granted, Cathy Cox does not act anything like a shrill Geraldine Ferraro or Hillary Clinton, but I do not have a feel for how “progressive” the typical South Georgia Democrat voter is in terms of their view on gender in a political race.

Anyone have a feel for this?

That is an intangible I have been wondering myself. I remember, several years ago, Mike Bowers invited me to a party for Willou Smith (way back when I was the President of the Georgia Federation of College Republicans). I took an ambitious female friend of mine to the party. On the way home she mentioned she one day wanted to run for office and my response was that, given where she lived, she needed to remember that a lot of good old southern women think politics is a man’s business. Her response was, matter of factly, “They’ll all be dead by the time I run.”

That was the mid-90s. Women have certainly made better and greater inroads. But, my thought is still the same. There are a lot of good old southern women and men who think politics is a man’s business. That said, because Cathy Cox is an established politician, I think she’ll most likely be given the benefit of the doubt by the women, who tend to outnumber men in a Democratic primary. Nonetheless, I think Cox will still have to work harder because of it.

What do you all think?


  1. Bull Moose says:

    Willous Smith paved the way in Georgia for women to enter the political arena — our state would have benefited greatly from her continued service in elected office.

  2. legal72 says:

    It’s like I have been telling my liberal friends, it’s easier for a woman now days than it was in the past. I think Cox will pull a strong soccer mom vote from the swing crowd just because she is a woman. And I think a lot of men on the liberal side will vote for her because she looks a lot better than Taylor. That is just my 2 cents but I think it will be an interesting primary to watch.

  3. Hissy Fit says:

    Actually, Dorothy Felton deserves much more accolades for being a woman before her time. I am sorry that she wasn’t in elective office when the Republicans took control of the House.

  4. Tater Tate says:

    I think Cox will do very well among women, but I agree there are just some women folk in the rest of Georgia who aren’t gonna trade a Sonny for a Cathy. Cathy ought to stay in the class room where she belongs. Sorry, that’s the other Kathy.

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