Photographer: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg

Trump Hires Three Men for Every Woman

An analysis of hundreds of early Trump hires finds significantly more men.

Women have been named to 27 percent of the appointed roles filled by President Donald Trump so far, according to a Bloomberg News analysis of records newly released by the federal government. That number falls far short of overall representation in the U.S. labor force, where women account for 47 percent.

The gender breakdown of Trump's first wave of appointees was based on a list of appointee names obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests by ProPublica. The nonprofit publication sent requests to the Office of Personnel Management and some two dozen federal agencies, though only six responded. The ProPublica list includes 436 people, mostly hired in late January, and doesn't include appointees who require Senate confirmation. The White Houses reportedly expected to appoint about 520 employees during a transitional period.

Bloomberg News determined gender based on an analysis of names, cross referenced with publicly available profiles on websites such as LinkedIn. Because each individual did not confirm his or her gender, the tally is subject to a small margin of error. Three of the employees, all within the Consumer Product Safety Commission, were first appointed by former President Barack Obama; two others on the list have already left their roles.  

There is evident gender disparity in the roster of Trump appointees. The most lopsided departments included Commerce, Treasury, and Energy—where fewer than 15 percent of the appointees were women. The highest ratios of female appointees, roughly half, were in the State Department and Health and Human Services. 

The White House didn't immediately respond to questions about the gender makeup of its early hires in federal agencies. The White House itself has "nearly the same number of male and female employees, with the employee ratio around the same as the national average," a spokeswoman said in an emailed statement.  

Trump's cabinet, among the most visible roles in any administration, includes four women out of 24 positions. President Obama named seven women to his first cabinet.

The Obama administration drew criticism at times for the perception that the atmosphere at the White House was challenging for women. Anita Dunn, a onetime White House communications director in the Obama administration, complained of a boys' club atmosphere. “Because it actually fit all of the classic legal requirements for a genuinely hostile workplace to women,” Dunn told the journalist Ron Suskind in a book published in 2011.

Still, there appears to have been a much smaller gender gap among appointees in the Obama era. The New York Times, in a report published in 2012, found that women held about 43 percent of appointed roles in the Obama administration. The same report found President George W. Bush named women to roughly one-third of appointed roles.

Wednesday marked International Women's Day, and a nationwide protest against President Trump included rallies in Washington, D.C., and outside the Trump International Hotel in New York City. "I have tremendous respect for women and the many roles they serve that are vital to the fabric of our society and our economy," President Trump said in a tweet.

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