Lawless and I undertook a two-part study of gender stereotyping during the 2010 midterm elections.
We first conducted a detailed analysis of local newspaper coverage of House races in nearly 350 congressional districts across the country. Analyzing 4,748 articles, we found virtually no gender differences whatsoever.
News coverage of women was just as common as coverage of men. And the content of campaign stories was nearly indistinguishable across candidate sex. The frequency with which reporters referred explicitly to candidates’ sex or gender – for instance, noting how they dressed or their family roles – was the same for men and women. Paul Ryan, hustling to the tailor to get that suit taken in, wouldn’t be surprised.