Gender Quotas in Elections – Irish Times has them already
1 March, 2011
Great coverage in yesterday’s Irish Times of the General Election results. Over 12 inside pages, there are stories and statistics from around the constituencies, plus plenty of photographs of successful and unsuccessful candidates at the various count centres.
Now only 15% of the total candidates in the election were women, and the same proportion of the successful candidates were women.
However, the Irish Times seemed to be adhering to a 40% quota rule, as 10 of the 24 candidates it featured in photographs from count centres were women (including all 4 on page 15). This is nearly three times the number one would expect, if the photographs chosen for publication were selected randomly and accurately reflected the gender divide among candidates.
I’m not complaining about this, as nothing much turns on it. Just pointing it out. I suppose that if I were a sub-editor in the Tara Street gynecocracy, I too would be keen to show my awareness of gender issues by including as many photos of our TD sisters as is possible. The fact that 85% of voters actually choose to elect men is neither here nor there.