How did the first female voters cast their ballots? For almost 100 years, answers to this question have eluded scholars. Counting Women's Ballots employs new data and novel methods to provide insights into whether, how, and with what consequences women voted in the elections after suffrage. The analysis covers a larger and more diverse set of places, over a longer period of time, than has previously been possible. J. Kevin Corder and Christina Wolbrecht find that the extent to which women voted and which parties they supported varied considerably across time and place, challenging attempts to describe female voters in terms of simple generalizations. Many women adapted quickly to their new right; others did not. In some cases, women reinforced existing partisan advantages; in others, they contributed to dramatic political realignment. Counting Women's Ballots improves our understanding of the largest expansion of the American electorate during a transformative period of American history.
J. Kevin Corder is a Professor of Political Science at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. His research has appeared in the American Political Science Review, the Journal of Politics and other outlets in political science and public administration. Much of his work focuses on economic policy, and he is the author of two books on the Federal Reserve System. In 2013, Corder received a Fulbright-Schuman European Affairs program grant to study the regulation of banks in Malta and the United Kingdom. Corder shared the Carrie Chapman Catt prize with Christina Wolbrecht for the research design that inspired Counting Women's Ballots. Christina Wolbrecht is an Associate Professor of Political Science and director of the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy at the University of Notre Dame. She is the author of The Politics of Women's Rights: Parties, Positions, and Change (2000), which received the Leon Epstein Outstanding Book Award from the Political Organizations and Parties Section of the APSA. She is co-editor of Political Women and American Democracy (Cambridge, 2008) as well as other edited volumes, and the author or co-author of a number of articles in leading political science journals.
1. Counting women's ballots; 2. Before suffrage; 3. What we already know; 4. Estimating women's turnout and vote choice; 5. Female voters and the republican landslide of 1920; 6. Female voters, republican majorities, and the progressive surge in 1924; 7. Female voters and the 'rum and religion' election of 1928; 8. Female voters and the emerging democratic majority, 1932-6; 9. Female voters from suffrage through the new deal and beyond.