Will CT Legislature Reverse Representation Trend in "Year of the Woman"?

The number of women in the Connecticut legislature has dropped with each legislative election throughout this decade, dropping the state from 8th to 21st in the nation in the percentage of women in the legislature. The 2018 election year has been widely declared the year of the woman in politics, a reaction to the MeToo movement and related issues that have risen to the top of many political agendas.  It appears that Connecticut ballots may have a record number of women candidates in November, depending upon the outcome of the August 14 primaries in some legislative districts.

If it turns out that a record number of women are elected to the state’s 187 General Assembly seats (36 in the Senate, 151 in the House) in November, it would reverse a trend a decade in the making.

This year, the state legislature saw 42 women serving in the House (21 Democrats and 21 Republicans) and 9 women in the Senate (7 Democrats and 2 Republicans).  The total of 51 seats held by women, 27.3 percent of the 187 seats, placed Connecticut as one of 19 states between 25 and 34 percent.

Leading the nation were Arizona (40%), Vermont (40%), Nevada (38.1%), Colorado (38%), Washington (37.4%), and Illinois (35.6%).   Women make up 25.4 percent of all state legislators nationwide.

In 2010, there were 60 women in the Connecticut legislature, 52 in the House and 8 in the Senate.  Connecticut ranked 8th among state legislatures in the percentage of women, at 32.1 percent.

Connecticut’s place among the states continued to drop through the decade, from 8th in 2010 to 9th in 2012, 13th in 2014, 16th in 2016 and 21st in 2018.