Women, Dems leading sexual harassment discussion in Congress: analysis
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Female and Democratic lawmakers are both minorities in Congress, but a new report shows that they’ve been the most outspoken about sexual assault and harassment.

An analysis conducted by Quorum, a Washington, D.C.-based legislative and public affairs tracking firm, found that women account for more than half of the dialogue about sexual misconduct this year, while comprising only 20 percent of Congress.

Quorum analyzed 2,615 press releases, floor statements, constituent newsletters and social media posts from campaign and official accounts as of late Monday afternoon for discussion of sexual assault and harassment. 

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The analysis found that women in Congress made up 53 percent of the discussion about sexual harassment and assault, while men made up 47 percent.

A total of 89 women, including non-voting delegates, serve in the House, compared to 352 men. Across the Capitol, the 100-member Senate has only 21 women.

The likelihood of a lawmaker speaking out about sexual assault and harassment was even more stark by partisan affiliation. Quorum found that Democrats made up 74 percent of discussion about the issue, while Republicans accounted for only 26 percent.

Quorum provided The Hill with data updated as of late Monday afternoon with 21 more lawmaker statements since its original study conducted last week that still showed the same overall findings.

Female lawmakers have been leading the legislative efforts to reform Capitol Hill’s workplace harassment and discrimination policies in recent weeks.

Rep. Jackie SpeierKaren (Jackie) Lorraine Jacqueline SpeierDems demand answers on Pentagon not recognizing Pride Month Overnight Defense: VA pick breezes through confirmation hearing | House votes to move on defense bill negotiations | Senate bill would set 'stringent' oversight on North Korea talks Overnight Defense: Defense spending bill amendments target hot-button issues | Space Force already facing hurdles | Senators voice 'deep' concerns at using military lawyers on immigration cases MORE (D-Calif.) and Sen. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandEx-GOP donor urges support for Dems in midterms: 'Democracy is at stake' Overnight Energy: Warren bill would force companies to disclose climate impacts | Green group backs Gillum in Florida gov race | Feds to open refuge near former nuke site Former Virginia Gov. McAuliffe to visit Iowa, fueling 2020 speculation MORE (D-N.Y.) introduced bipartisan legislation called the “ME TOO Congress Act” — borrowing the popular hashtag that helped ignite discussion about sexual harassment in recent weeks — to overhaul the current process available to staff to report harassment.

Before introducing her bill, Speier had posted a video sharing her own experience: while she was working as a congressional staffer in the 1970s, a chief of staff forcibly kissed her, she said.

Other female lawmakers have also shared their experiences of sexual harassment in recent weeks.

Rep. Diana DeGetteDiana Louise DeGetteLive coverage: Social media execs face grilling on Capitol Hill Women poised to take charge in Dem majority Bipartisan leaders of House panel press drug companies on opioid crisis MORE (D-Colo.) told MSNBC last week that former Rep. Bob Filner (D-Calif.) tried to pin her against an elevator door and kiss her. And Rep. Linda Sánchez (D-Calif.) told The Associated Press that she had been sexually harassed by two male colleagues since she began serving in the House, one of whom she said is no longer in Congress.

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharGOP in striking distance to retake Franken seat Warner: 'overwhelming majority' of Republicans would back social media regulations Republicans block Democratic bid to subpoena Kavanaugh documents MORE (Minn.), the top Democrat on the Senate Rules Committee, co-authored a resolution that the Senate adopted earlier this month to require sexual harassment awareness training for members and staff. Sens. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyWife of 'Glow' director writes 'Stop Kavanaugh' on her arm for Emmy Awards Grassley agrees to second Kavanaugh hearing after GOP members revolt Murkowski echoes calls for Kavanaugh, accuser to testify MORE (R-Iowa), Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMurkowski echoes calls for Kavanaugh, accuser to testify McConnell rips Democrats for handling of Kavanaugh nomination Kavanaugh furor intensifies as calls for new testimony grow MORE (R-Ky.), Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyCongress reaches deal to fund government through Dec. 7, preventing shutdown Senate approves first 2019 spending package GOP shrugs off Trump shutdown threat MORE (R-Ala.), Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoThis week: Democrats pledge ‘sparks’ in Kavanaugh hearing Congress faces September scramble on spending California passes bill to ban controversial drift net fishing MORE (R-W.Va.) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) were also involved in the resolution’s introduction.

The House is set to adopt a similar resolution requiring anti-harassment training for its members and staff on Wednesday. Rep. Barbara ComstockBarbara Jean ComstockVirginia reps urge Trump to declare federal emergency ahead of Hurricane Florence The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by Better Medicare Alliance — 2020 hopefuls lead the charge against Kavanaugh Trump retweets GOP Senate candidate upset by federal pay freeze MORE (R-Va.) is the chief sponsor of the measure.

That’s not to say female lawmakers are the only ones pushing legislation to overhaul Capitol Hill harassment policies. Rep. Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisDeSantis 'hell bent' on debating Gillum in Florida governor race Trump stands by tweets questioning Puerto Rico death toll: 'NO WAY' Trump cites Geraldo Rivera on Puerto Rico: ‘When did people start dying?’ MORE (R-Fla.) plans to introduce a bill this week that would prohibit the use of taxpayer dollars to settle sexual harassment claims involving lawmakers or congressional staff, require any lawmaker named in a settlement to reimburse taxpayers and make public all settlement payments funded by taxpayers.

The Office of Compliance released data earlier this month showing that more than $17 million in settlements were paid out to victims, which included cases apart from sexual harassment like racial or religious discrimination. Settlements are paid out by a special fund operated by the Treasury.

However, BuzzFeed reported last week that a former staffer to Rep. John ConyersJohn James ConyersConservative activist disrupts campaign event for Muslim candidates Michigan Dems elect state's first all-female statewide ticket for midterms Record numbers of women nominated for governor, Congress MORE Jr. (D-Mich.) who accused him of sexual harassment was paid a more than $27,000 settlement from his taxpayer-funded office instead of the Treasury fund. Conyers has denied wrongdoing and said the settlement was made to avoid protracted litigation.

Conyers has since stepped aside from his position as ranking Democrat on the powerful House Judiciary Committee. Only one lawmaker — female Democratic Rep. Kathleen RiceKathleen Maura RiceReforms can stop members of Congress from using their public office for private gain The Hill's Morning Report — Dems split on key issues but united against Trump Trump ally suspends reelection campaign MORE (N.Y.) — has called for Conyers to resign altogether.