Republicans facing potential hard sell to women
That’s not our headline — we borrowed it from a Reuters story out today talking about the difficulties the GOP presidential candidates are facing in attracting women voters. Jezebel’s was a little punchier: “Republicans worried Women won’t vote for [expletive].”
So, what’s in the story? In 2008, Barack Obama won 56 percent of the women’s vote (as contrasted with 49 percent of men), a gap that looks even bigger when you factor in that 10 million more women voted.
Naturally, the stories focused on some of the character questions about the personal lives of candidates like Gingrich and Cain that have been hashed out publicly. But Jezebel rightly pointed out Romney’s flip-flops on all sorts of issues and nails it with this paragraph:
“To make matters worse, the party's been hijacked by a conservative fringe that's too conservative even for Mississippi. Every candidate in the race with the exception of poor, reasonable, forgotten Jon Huntsman said they supported a definition of personhood that began at conception, a notion rejected by [58 percent] of voters in the most conservative state in the union.”
There’s no question that the economy is going to be a huge concern for all voters in 2012. And for women, access to comprehensive health care is a critical part of that. That’s why Planned Parenthood gained 1.2 million new supporters when Congress threatened to defund its health centers, and it’s why 90,000 people signed the petition urging Obama to stand strong and insure access to birth control as preventive health care for all women (with no additional co-pays). And it’s why we’re holding all candidates accountable for understanding the vital role health care plays in our lives.
Bottomline? It’s no surprise to us that Republican strategists are worried that women won’t respond to their candidates. We didn’t need a pollster (or even a fortune teller) to tell us that.