Statistics on Mothers in the 113th Congress

We checked with the reliable sources, like Rutgers University Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) and the Congressional Research Service, but we weren’t able to find any statistics on how many women in the 113th Congress were first elected to Congress when their kids were under age 18, over age 18, or whether they were not mothers.  We were especially curious about differences between Republican and Democratic women.

Here are the results:

Statistics on Mothers in Congress


We included these statistics in an article we wrote that examined how having kids at home affects women candidates.  While 61% of Republican women in Congress were first elected when their kids were under age 18, only 24% of Democratic women had children at home when first elected.  Republican women account for only 24% of all women in Congress and are much more likely than Democratic women to lose their primaries.  There is some evidence that Republican women pay a “mommy penalty” among their own party’s voters witnessed by lower support for women, especially women with children at home.  So, the majority of the Republican women in Congress who were elected when their children were small are truly survivors.

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