Just 52% of Americans are 'very comfortable' with a woman as president

Michael Kovac/Getty ImagesDemocratic Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Kamala Harrisare both potential 2020 contenders.
  • Just over half of Americans are “very comfortable” with the prospect of a female commander in chief, according to a new report released this week by the consulting firm Kantar Public.
  • On this question, the US came in third among G7 nations – behind the UK and Canada.
  • This comes as women, particularly in the Democratic party, have been elected into office in the US in historic numbers.

Just over half of Americans are “very comfortable” with the prospect of a female commander in chief, according to a new report released this week by the consulting firm Kantar Public.

According to the report, 52% would feel “very comfortable” with a woman at the head of government, and 63% would feel similarly comfortable with a woman as a CEO of a major company.

The study surveyed 10,000 people across seven developed nations – the members of the G7 – to investigate public sentiment concerning women in leadership, and they were given a score from 0 to 100 on the Reykjavik Index for Leadership. “A score of 100 means that across society, there is complete agreement that men and women are equally suited to leadership in all sectors,” the report explains. Out of the G7 nations, the US ranked third with a score of 70.


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Both the UK and Canada reported a higher tolerance for women in political leadership – 58% of those surveyed in the UK and 57% of those polled in Canada said they’d be “very comfortable” with a female head of government. At the low end of the spectrum, just 26% of those in Germany and 23% of those in Japan felt the same way.

In the US, women – particularly in the Democratic party – are running for office, and winning, in unprecedented numbers. And several female politicians, including Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, and Kirsten Gillibrand, are likely contenders for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

Some of these women have pointed to their gender as an attribute, rather than a barrier, in their pursuit of power.

“It’s time for women to go to Washington and fix our broken government, and that includes a woman at the top,” Warren told supporters in September. “So here’s what I promise: After November 6, I will take a hard look at running for president.”

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