NH's all-female delegation talk gender, politics

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 7, 2012 at 10:57 am •  Published: December 7, 2012
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MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — The five women holding New Hampshire's top political offices said Friday that women bring a unique perspective to politics.

Gov.-elect Maggie Hassan, U.S. Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte and U.S. Reps.-elect Ann McLane Kuster and Carol Shea-Porter appeared on a panel to discuss what their lives are like as female politicians.

They said they are no different than their male colleagues in caring about the interests of the state and nation, but see things through a woman's eyes.

"As women, we have different experiences than men," said Shaheen.

Kuster said women have to make peace with toddlers to teenagers. If you can do that, "you can find common ground," she said. "We know how to get things done."

Shea-Porter, who is returning to Congress after losing in 2010, said she served on the House Armed Services Committee and the male members would quiz witnesses about the nuts and bolts of an operation to a country while the women asked if the country's people wanted the United States to come there.

Shaheen, Ayotte, Kuster and Shea-Porter are the nation's first all-female congressional delegation. Hassan is New Hampshire's second female governor. Shaheen was its first. Ayotte is a Republican. The others are Democrats.

The five also said they hope the historic firsts they have made in getting elected won't be the norm in the future.

"Hopefully we'll get to a point where it is no longer significant," Shaheen said.

Kuster joked that "pink is the new power color in New Hampshire."

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