Women's Forum: There's a Gender Gap in Political Contributions

Thursday, 24 Jul 2014 07:18 PM

By Courtney Coren

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Women give significantly less to political campaigns than men because of the gender differences that come into play when it's time to write "that check for a political candidate," says Hadley Heath Manning, health policy director for the Independent Women's Forum.

"Women interact with the system differently, and we've got to begin to acknowledge that," Manning told Ed Berliner on "MidPoint" on Newsmax TV on Thursday.

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According to InTheCapital, a local Washington news website, Democratic donor Tom Steyer donated more than $18.2 million to political campaigns and groups. However, Virginia James, who has donated more to political campaigns and groups than any other woman, has only donated a total of $1.8 million.

A total of $51.1 million has been donated to by the top 10 male donors in 2014 so far, compared to $8 million that has been donated by the top 10 female donors.

"We have to recognize again that communication is important," Manning said.

"So putting things in different language, in different terms, making different arguments — those are things that we can do to reach wider parts of the electorate, including women," she said. "We are beginning to acknowledge that in the way we do fundraising, the way we speak to women about politics."

Manning explained that "conservatives and Republicans" seem to struggle with this the most because "we don't like group politics, we don't like identity politics, we don't like gender pandering when it comes to politics."

However, "that's not the same thing as recognizing that women hear messages differently, they want to donate to things differently, and they don't want to be — this is very important — women don't want to be sort of an accessory or sideline to what's traditionally been called women's issues."


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