Date of Award

Spring 5-23-2021

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Political Science

First Advisor

Sarah Niebler

Language

English

Abstract

The number of women in politics in America is not representative of the number of women in the country. That number is even more unrepresentative when breaking it down by different identities, like political party. In this thesis, I investigate how women of the two major political parties campaign using their gender, or not. After an in depth analysis of a week’s worth of Twitter content from the women who ran for U.S. Senate in 2020, I find that Republican and Democratic women differ in how they use their gender to campaign. Democrats market themselves as women more while trying to tie themselves to women as an identity group. Republicans tend to talk about their gender with respect to accomplishments as women. Understanding how women do or do not use gender in their campaigns should help organizations to develop better and more nuanced recruiting strategies to help them be more successful when recruiting women to run for office.

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