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National News

Published Tuesday, March 28, 2000, in the San Jose Mercury News

Study discovers wide gender gap in politics knowledge

Candidates' views on campaign issues not reaching women

BY STEVEN THOMMA
Mercury News Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON -- They are the most sought-after voters, the ones who can make or break presidential campaigns. But when it comes to knowing facts about politics, women inexplicably lag behind men.

That conclusion, reached in a study by the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, is true for questions on such general issues as nuclear test ban treaties or which candidate was a prisoner of war.

But it also is true on several issues that have traditionally been identified as being of interest to women, issues such as where the Democrats stood on abortion rights.

In fact, out of 25 questions about specific issues in this year's presidential campaign or the backgrounds of four major presidential candidates, women outperformed men on only one: a question about the Democratic candidates' positions on public financing of campaigns.

``The perplexing finding that women do not perform as well as men on political knowledge still persists in the year 2000,'' said the report, released Monday and written by Kathleen Hall Jamieson, a political scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, and Kate Kenski, a student.

A missed message

It's unusual in part because the presidential candidates in both parties this year are catering to female voters, aiming their agendas, speeches and ad campaigns at them. The candidates know they probably will split the male vote, and that the one who wins the women's vote therefore will win the presidency.

The ``gender gap in political knowledge'' is also hard to explain, the authors of the report said, because women, who make up 53 percent of the electorate, have been steadily increasing their participation in politics over recent decades.

``Since 1980, women have voted either at the same or at a higher rate than men,'' the study said. ``Educational attainment is now comparable between the sexes. There is greater female presence in the labor force. And the number of women seeking political office has risen.''

Jamieson said one possible explanation is that women and men discuss politics differently.

``Men talk with one another at work about politics,'' she said. ``Women don't have that same socialization. It's a function of how women talk about politics.''

Women tended to get more answers wrong than men, Jamieson said, regardless of age, race, income, education, marital status or party identification. One theme common to either gender, she said, is that the more people relied on local TV news for information, the less informed they were. ``Local news-watching makes you dumber,'' Jamieson said.

The study did find one sign of change, however dubious.

During the 1996 campaign, women and men reacted differently when they did not know the correct answer to political questions. Then, too, men were more likely to answer correctly. But women did not get the answers wrong; they were more likely to say they did not know the answer.

This time, women jumped in with answers, but were still more likely to get them wrong.

Background questions

The study, which was based on polls taken Dec. 14, 1999, and March 13, 2000, asked women and men 25 questions about the backgrounds of Democrats Al Gore and Bill Bradley and Republicans George W. Bush and John McCain as well as about their stands on several issues.

It found men answered correctly often more than women in 15 questions. They were right about the Democrats' positions on universal health care, a nuclear test ban treaty, abortion rights and President Reagan's tax cuts as well as identifying which Democrat was a former senator, which was the son of a former senator and which was a former basketball player.

The men also fared better when asked about the Republicans' stands on the test ban treaty, ethanol tax breaks, instant gun checks, a ban on ``soft'' campaign contributions and which candidate was a governor, a senator and a former prisoner of war.

Some agendas advanced

It found no difference between women and men in how often they selected correct answers to nine questions.

The questions were about the Democrats' stands on college savings accounts and HMO lawsuits, and about the Republicans' stands on a constitutional amendment against abortion, school vouchers, medical savings accounts, missile defense, gay marriage, raising the retirement age for Social Security and the Russian attack on Chechnya.


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TRAITOR McCain

jewn McCain

ASSASSIN of JFK, Patton, many other Whites

killed 264 MILLION Christians in WWII

killed 64 million Christians in Russia

left 350 firemen behind to die in WTC

holocaust denier extraordinaire--denying the Armenian holocaust

millions dead in the Middle East

tens of millions of dead Christians

LOST $1.2 TRILLION in Pentagon
spearheaded torture & sodomy of all non-jews
millions dead in Iraq

42 dead, mass murderer Goldman LOVED by jews

serial killer of 13 Christians

the REAL terrorists--not a single one is an Arab

serial killers are all jews

framed Christians for anti-semitism, got caught

legally insane debarred lawyer CENSORED free speech

mother of all fnazis, certified mentally ill

10,000 Whites DEAD from one jew LIE

moser HATED by jews: he followed the law

f.ck Jesus--from a "news" person!!

1000 fold the child of perdition

 

Modified Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Copyright @ 2007 by Fathers' Manifesto & Christian Party