New American research has shown that the gender of children can influence the attitudes, actions and political leanings of the parents.
In a massive study of American and Canadian mothers and fathers, sociologist Rebecca Warner and the economist Ebonya Washington found that parents of daughters were significantly more likely to support politicians, parties and policies that aimed to redress the imbalance between the sexes. And that this is particularly true for fathers.
The authors of the report argue, that as parents invest so much in their children they take on the struggles — such as sexual inequality — that they think their kids might be going to face in the future. They also showed that parents who had only daughters were far more likely to be feminist.
Ebonya Washington did further research showing that members of the American congress who had female children were more likely to vote liberally on reproductive rights issues such as teen access to contraceptives regardless of their party allegiance. And that congreesmen also vote more liberally on a range of issues such as working families flexibility and tax-free education.
‘Giving birth to sons, by contrast, seems to make people more likely to vote for a right-wing party,’ says Washington.