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Women in Presidential CabinetsPower Players or Abundant Tokens?$
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Maria C. Escobar-Lemmon and Michelle M. Taylor-Robinson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190491420

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190491420.001.0001

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Minorities not tokens

Minorities not tokens

Conclusions about equality of women in presidential cabinets

(p.253) Chapter 11. Minorities not tokens
Women in Presidential Cabinets

Maria C. Escobar-Lemmon

Michelle M. Taylor-Robinson

Oxford University Press

Chapter 11 brings together the findings from other chapters to draw conclusions about whether women have become power players in presidential cabinets, or instead remain tokens, although more numerous ones. Ministerial effectiveness is scored based on a combination of how ministers exit, how long they remain in post, and their legislative activity. There is repeated evidence of equal effectiveness (or treatment) of male and female ministers across multiple measures. Women are as likely as men to have multiple political capital resources (PCRs), and both male and female ministers with multiple PCRs are generally more effective than ministers with few PCRs. Not all women appear to be power players, but the same would hold for men. On balance, the evidence indicates that gender integration, albeit with male norms is occurring, even while cabinets may remain gendered institutions and while there is still room for more progress toward numerical equality.

Keywords:   presidential cabinets, women’s representation, women in cabinets, tokens, gendered institution, political capital resources, ministerial effectiveness

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