Last month’s election saw the number of women serving in the California Legislature fall, down to less than a quarter. At the same time women gained ground in city and county offices around the state.
Female representation in the Legislature has actually slid for the last couple elections, but statistically, that might not mean much.
“Looking at the Legislature, while it’s very important, it’s kind of a bad marker from a trend line, because the sample size is so small," says Robb Korinke, principal of Grassroots Lab, a Long Beach-based research and advocacy firm.
He says there are thousands of local elected offices around California. And at the city council level, Korinke says women are on the rise.
“What we’re looking at now, after November’s election, is about 31 percent. So we’ve seen a 2 to 3 percentage point gain, and that’s among 2,500 seats across the state,” Korinke says.
Korinke says that suggests something about future elections too. He says the more women starting out in local races, the more there will be running for higher office.