News Columns & Blogs

Number of women legislators has declined

In late 2012 Senate President Susan Wagle (in photo), R-Wichita, became the first woman to lead a chamber of the Kansas Legislature. But women have lost ground among the rank and file in Topeka, with their representation in the 165-member Legislature having slipped from 33.3 percent in 2000 to 30.3 percent in 2010 to 23.6 percent now. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 24.2 percent of state lawmakers are women nationwide. Colorado women lead the region, making up 41 percent of the 100-member Legislature. In Oklahoma, where Mary Fallin is governor, only 13.4 percent of the 149 legislators are women.