Despite Policies, Rick Perry’s Cabinet Is Dominated By Women

A few weeks back, President Obama got in a bit of a pickle after the New York Times pointed out that, you know, there aren’t really that many women making decisions in the Obama administration. John Kerry, Chuck Hagel, and John O. Brennan had just been nominated for high-level positions, and only about 43 percent of Obama’s appointees have been women. The number’s still a leap from George W. Bush — roughly one-third of his appointees were women – but still, people expected better.

It’s even more surprising when compared to Rick Perry, whose senior staff is nearly two-thirds women. According to the Texas Tribune:

In all, about 60 percent of the 256 governor’s office employees are female. Among Perry’s most senior staff – those charged with making key decisions for the governor – two-thirds are women.

“Rick Perry has never needed a binder full of women,” said Deirdre Delisi, Perry’s first female chief of staff, alluding to Mitt Romney’s comments during a presidential debate about how he sought help recruiting women for cabinet posts while he was governor of Massachusetts.

Perry’s opponents suggest that his tenure has not been kind to Texas women. The state’s longest-serving governor has worked to further restrict access to abortion. And he has been unwavering in his desire to force all Planned Parenthood clinics – which may not provide abortions if they accept state or federal tax dollars – out of a program that provides family planning services to the state’s poorest women.