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During the last legislative session, a female scribe in the press gallery asked me, “Have you ever noticed that the women say what they need to say and sit down, and the men go on and on?”
I had noticed.
Now, this isn’t true of all legislators. There are a few long-winded women and some men who measure their words. Both chambers have too many lawyers (male) who never tire of exercising their vocal chords, even though everybody else tires of exercising their ear drums.
When the session convenes this week, the Senate will have just six women, the smallest number in a decade, because some bowed out and others lost their races.
The House gained six women, for a total of 25. So if the initial observation holds, House speeches should be shorter and more to the point.
The usual argument about having more women is that many of the issues affect us more, but I argue that women do things differently. We’re inclined to be more collaborative and less competitive.
A businessman once told me that he preferred to hire women. “They’re more loyal,” he said. “Guys are always working deals on the side.”
Other men told me they’d become avid fans of UNM’s Lady Lobo basketball players “because they really play as a team.”
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