Document Type

Honors Project


This thesis offers an analysis of the relationship between gender and electoral outcomes in the 2018 midterm elections. What role did gender play in the success of candidates for the House of Representatives? In answering this question, I quantify women’s success by analyzing the extent to which female candidates’ vote shares can be attributed to their gender. I find that, while controlling for various electoral and biographical factors, female challengers and open seat candidates performed better than their male counterparts, while female incumbents had no advantage over male incumbents. These outcomes also divided along party lines, with Democratic women performing better than Republican women. Based on the relevant literature and drawing upon similarities between 2018 and the 1992 “Year of the Woman” elections, I argue that three main factors lead to women’s success in Congressional elections: issues in the presidential administration, highly publicized sexism scandals, and unusual changes to the Congressional landscape.



© Copyright is owned by author of this document