I suspected as much and then my hunch was confirmed by Google searches and a recent story in The New York Times.
Women in politics don't cheat. Or if they do, they don't get caught nearly as often as men and they almost never make public spectacles of themselves for cheating.
In her June 11, 2011 New York Times article, "When It Comes to Scandal, Girls Won't Be Boys," Sheryl Gay Stolberg writes: "There was a collective rolling of the eyes and a distinct sense of "Here we go again" among the women of the House of Representatives last week," after Rep. Anthony Weiner's sexting scandal and shame-filled apology.
She quotes one female politician observing Weiner's public scandal:
"I'm telling you," said Representative Candice Miller, a Michigan Republican, "every time one of these sex scandals goes, we just look at each other, like, 'What is it with these guys? Don't they think they're going to get caught?' "
Whatever they're thinking, or not thinking, it appears to be an entirely different mindset than their female counterparts. Women in politics rarely get stuck in these messes. With Rep. Weiner safely in rehab, we have some time to ponder the question: Why not?
'Women run for office to do something, and men run for office to be somebody.'
Apparently research confirms that it goes beyond the 'men are pigs' theory and actually has its roots in the differences in why men and women seek political office in the first place.
Stolberg offers this insight: "The shorthand of it is that women run for office to do something, and men run for office to be somebody," said Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University."
It makes sense. If it's harder for you to get into politics to begin with; if you go into it with a mission or a cause you care about (other than yourself, your ego and your career) and there are far fewer of your kind (women) in the hallowed halls once you get elected so you're watched more carefully, it stands to reason you'd behave well.
I mean, can you picture (now-Baroness) Margaret Thatcher – the first woman to lead a major Western democracy as the conservative British Prime Minister—clicking nudie Polaroids of herself in Parliament's health club locker room and blasting them over the wire to her buddy Ronald Reagan?
Let's just leave it at that.
Interested in reading more on the Rep. Weiner's sex scandal?