Women Thriving Under Bush

Last week, the Census Department released its annual survey of income, poverty and healthcare coverage. Health dominated the press while the first two topics went largely unreported. Why? Because they were filled with good news.

Perhaps the most neglected piece of data, however, was the ratio of female to male earnings. It turns out that, despite all the hand-wringing about single moms and soccer moms and single/soccer/security moms and their gender gap — the real gap between men’s paychecks and women’s has never been smaller. In other words, under George W. Bush we have the highest levels of income equality ever recorded.

It’s not just Bush, it’s tax-cutters in general. The chart shows a very strong surge in income for women during the Reagan years. It even works when Democrats cut taxes. The JFK cuts in 1964 and the Clinton/Gingrich capital gains cut of 1997 both helped women gain on men.

If there’s a political gender gap, it’s due to a communication gender gap, because the income gender gap is rapidly closing. The data are clear: Tax cuts are good for growth, and growth is good for women. Republicans need to make this case, because the Democrats and the press won’t do it for them.