Traditional Gender Gap

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The term “gender gap” attempts to explain the differences between the genders in their party identifications and their voting choices. In the election of 1980 the discussion of the emergence of a gender gap ensued for this was the first time more women than men voted and there proved to be a significant gender divide between the Democrats and Republicans. From the 1920s until the 1980s, lower levels of female voters were recorded. And after the 80s, slightly higher levels of female voters were recorded. In addition to the changing number of voters, a gender reversal in voting choice and party identification has been noted. This created a “traditional gender gap” in the 50s and 60s which suggested that women were more likely to support center-right parties in Western Europe and the US. “Most explanations of the traditional gender gap…show more content…
In the 1980s a greater number of women who had previously identified as right wing in the 50s flipped sides and became more left wing (Norris 2003, 149). This traditional gap closed in the 1960s and 1970s and the modern gender gap began to emerge. The size of the gender gap has also changed and shrunk to only a few percentage points in recent elections (Norris 2003, 150).
There are believed to be four major causes and hypotheses of gender realignment: “issue-based” explanations, structural explanations, political mobilization, and generational accounts (Norris 2003, 155). The issue-based explanations state that “the conditions of issue voting are threefold: the public needs to be divided over the issue, the issue needs to be

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