CNN Says Women Vote With Their Hormones???

by Erika W. Smith

WTF. Yesterday, CNN published an article examining how women vote with their hormones, not with, you know, their brains. Titled “Study looks at voting and hormones: Hormones may influence female voting choices,” the article has since been taken down from CNN, but this is the Internet, and it still exists in its full form here and here.

The article begins with the offensive opening sentence, “While the campaigns eagerly pursue female voters, there’s something that may raise the chances for both presidential candidates that’s totally out of their control: women’s ovulation cycles.”

It only gets worse. Although admitting that “several political scientists who read the study have expressed skepticism about its conclusions” and that the study is unpublished and based entirely on an Internet survey, the article goes on to enumerate how women’s hormones change their vote: single women with high estrogen are more likely to vote for Obama, and committed women with high estrogen are more likely to vote for Romney.

Umm, what? That sounds more about the single vote versus the married vote, or the younger vote versus the older vote, than anything to do with estrogen.


The article continues:

Here’s how Durante [one of the study’s authors] explains this: When women are ovulating, they ‘feel sexier,’ and therefore lean more toward liberal attitudes on abortion and marriage equality. Married women have the same hormones firing, but tend to take the opposite viewpoint on these issues, she says. 

“I think they’re overcompensating for the increase of the hormones motivating them to have sex with other men,” she said. It’s a way of convincing themselves that they’re not the type to give in to such sexual urges, she said.

Well, CNN, let me tell you: the way I vote has nothing to do with my estrogen levels or how sexy I feel, and everything to do with the candidates’ policies.

Since publication, outraged posts about the article have appeared on the Huffington Post, the Washington Post, and Jezebel, among other sites. CNN removed the article in response to the backlash, and if you follow the original link now, you find a note that the post has been removed because “After further review it was determined that some elements of the story did not meet the editorial standards of CNN.”

The post is gone, but at the time of writing, all 328 outraged comments are still there. Take a look – many of them are more intelligent and journalistic than CNN’s original article.


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