Gender and Politics in the media

Is the women’s vote a false concept? Clegg: Men happy to reveal wages to female colleagues. Cameron, Miliband vote for women in reshuffles.

David Cameron and Ed Miliband attend the state opening of parliament. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Is the women’s vote a false concept? The Guardian (blog) Politicians play up policies on childcare to attract female voters, but using broad stereotypes could do more harm than good

…According to polls, women tend to care more about the state of the economy than they do about perceived women’s issues. Research from the University of Essex shows that voters, and particularly women, are not easily swayed by what leaders tell them in the runup to an election, instead basing their choices on how parties have fared in the past.

This isn’t a recent trend either, yet parties continue to focus their energy on a very limited idea of what women want. Sandys knows the Conservatives must do more to get the message across to women in a new way if they want to win the election in 2015.

Tory women set for promotion in David Cameron’s second reshuffle … …Mr Cameron is likely to use the reshuffle to promote more women, with Karen Bradley or Nicky Morgan also tipped to be moved out of the whips’ office and into a Government department.

Other possible candidates for promotion include Work and Pensions minister Esther McVey, Justice minister Helen Grant, Health minister Anna Soubry and Education minister Liz Truss.

Miss Truss presented Michael Gove’s GCSE reforms in the summer, despite seeing her childcare reforms watered down by the Liberal Democrats, while Miss Soubry would be a sop to the party’s Left, as well as a fillip to the party’s faithful who enjoy the way she shoots from the lip.

David Cameron and Ed Miliband vote for women in reshuffles The Independent David Cameron is preparing to increase the number of women in his government this week to meet his pledge of having a third of female ministers by 2015.

While one or two cabinet ministers may see their jobs change, the main shake-up, expected tomorrow, will be in the junior ministerial ranks, with Liz Truss, Anna Soubry and Helen Grant tipped for promotion, along with Jessica Lee, a relatively unknown MP who is parliamentary aide to Dominic Grieve. The Prime Minister was heavily criticised a year ago for a reshuffle which saw the number of women in the Cabinet decrease from five to four.

Ken Clarke faces the sack in David Cameron reshuffle Ken Clarke faces the sack this week as David Cameron reshuffles his top team. The veteran Tory is expected to be axed in a reshuffle aimed at promoting more women MPs. Minister Without ­Portfolio Mr Clarke, 73, was first elected as a Nottinghamshire MP 43 years ago. But he dropped a strong hint in a BBC interview that he feared the PM might ask him to step aside. Mr Clarke said: “Sooner or later, I’m sure he’ll ask. He’s had me in the Government for three and a half years – longer than I expected.”

Nick Clegg backed a campaign to encourage women to ask their male colleagues what their salary is Photo: Geoff Pugh

Men would be happy to reveal wages to female colleagues, says … The Deputy Prime Minister has today thrown his backing behind a campaign to encourage women to ask their male colleagues what their salary is and he believes that most men will be receptive to their request.

It comes after yesterday Jo Swinson, the Women and Equalities minister, said women should pluck up the courage to confront male colleagues about their earnings even though the subject of pay is taboo in British culture.

Mr Clegg, speaking to Elle, said pay inequality between men and women is a “stubborn problem” as he backed the magazine’s campaign to stamp it out.

“Women should feel free to ask male colleagues how much they earn in the same jobs and I’m sure most men would want to help,” he said. “This is a simple step which could have a big impact.

Women should ask male colleagues how much they earn, says UK … The Guardian Women should ask their male colleagues how much they earn if they want to get equal pay, Jo Swinson, the equalities minister, has said. The senior Liberal Democrat said a “very British” reluctance to talk about pay could hold women back from getting pay rises.

Speaking to Elle magazine as part of its campaign for equal pay between men ands women, Swinson said many women did not realise they were being paid less than their male counterparts.

“One of the things I think is brilliant about your campaign is encouraging people to open up about their pay,” she said. “I think sometimes there’s something very British in our culture where we don’t talk about money, and I think that holds women back.

“If they realised they were earning significantly less than male colleagues at a similar level, that might be the catalyst they need to ask for a pay rise.”

Swinson said the government might have to impose “equal pay audits” on companies if it did not see a reduction in the gap between what men and women are earning.

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