Republicans are really stupid when it comes to women and votes. Here it is, 2014 with lots of GOP women candidates and Republicans don’t know how to fight the Obama “war on women” nonsense.
Consider the Republican women candidates for U.S. Senate 2014: pediatric neurosurgeon Monica Wehby (Oregon); presumed next senator Shelley Moore Capito (West Virginia); strong contender Joni Ernst (Iowa); Susan Collins (Maine) the incumbent and presumed winner; and with-in striking distance Terri Lynn Land (Michigan).
If you believe Obama propaganda all these women wage war against women even though they themselves are women. How can this be?
The phony “war on women” defines “women” as those of the female gender that follow a certain political persuasion. By this corrupt definition if you are a “pro-life” anti-abortion female you are not a woman. By this corrupt definition if you are a black female Christian who believes in personal responsibility not government intrusion into all spheres of life you are not a woman. By this corrupt definition if you would like to be able to buy contraceptives over-the-counter without additional costs forced on you because of a required Planned Parenthood visit to get contraceptives – profits going to Planned Parenthood – you are not a woman. See it is simple. Corruptly redefine to get the desired outcome.
You would think Republicans would catch on to the redefinition game and do some redefinitions of their own. But no. Daze haz da stupit.
Republican Terri Lynn Land who still has an outside chance of victory in the improbable Michigan senate race (latest poll has the race 41-46) faces attacks on the ridiculous “war on women” charge. Land responded with this fun ad:
We think the ad is amusing. The ad has some logic to it too with the little Land message at the very end. Well, “logic” unless you understand that according to Obama this Terri Lynn Land is not a woman because she does not believe what Obama and his henchmen believe.
We think the ad is amusing and we like it because of the snark. But should a campaign waste precious dollars and time airing this entertainment? Probably not. Frank Luntz explains why:
We’d like to disagree with Luntz who does not even get the candidate’s name right, but we can’t. There should be a better way to fight the “war on women” but the Republicans can’t seem to figure it out. Let’s help the poor dears.
First, if you have a lot of women candidates, why don’t you make sure the voters know how many? Why not produce an advertisement with the resources of the Republican National Committee to have all these women appear together in one strong ad with a unified message? A group of strong Republican women in one ad is a simple rejoinder to the Obama “war on women” rubbish. You know that phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words”? Well, a group picture of all the GOP senate candidates’ with plumbing that indicates they are indeed women is worth a lot more than a thousand words.
Second, you want to nationalize the elections? Well, what easier way than to nationalize the elections with a simple picture of all the Republican women running for senate across the entire country? These strong women can proclaim their policies to be family friendly, woman friendly, men friendly, children friendly, pet friendly, etc. They can proclaim they are under attack because they are women who think independently. Redefine the “war on women”.
Third, you want to win the “war on women” and get women voters to vote for your women (and men) candidates? Have you heard that “the best defense is a good offense“? Have these women candidates make their case together for why they should win. Why voters should vote for them. Don’t fight the “war on women” with snarky press releases and ads and leave out policy.
Bonus Forth reason: you get more Republican women in the Senate which by itself will increase the number of women in the senate and make it easier to run women for the senate in the future and win. The more women you elect the more you can redefine the “war on women” and win elections.
Republicans should follow our advice (Hillary should follow our advice too) but well… they just can’t help it. Republican “strategists” and “leadership” are a bit like ‘enry ‘iggins when it comes to election strategy.
Republicans have long complained that it’s unfair of Democrats to accuse them of waging a “war on women” largely based on their positions regarding abortion and birth control. Two years ago, the GOP party chair called it “a fiction,” suggesting Republicans have no more problem with women than they do with “caterpillars.” [snip]
The flurry of Republican ads targeting women confirm they know the gender gap is for real. But as the numbers indicate, the ads haven’t narrowed it; they often try too hard, miss the point and make the problem worse.
One way they do so is by feeding ham-fisted lines to bad actors. Take the ad “Talk,” produced by Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS to help Colorado Republican Cory Gardner wrest a Senate seat from incumbent Mark Udall. The ad is supposed to depict four women friends casually chatting about the election, and implicitly rejecting Udall’s accusations that Gardner wants to ban some forms of birth control. But the conservation is clunky from the start.
“I want a real conversation about the issues that matter,” says the first woman, thereby declaring that the four “friends” shall commence just such a conversation.
“Unfortunately after 15 years in Washington, political scare tactics are all Mark Udall has left,” says the second, sounding more like a politician than a real person.
“We aren’t single-issue voters,” says the third, sounding more like a political consultant than an ordinary voter.
Or check out “Dating Profile,” made by Americans for Shared Prosperity, another male-run Republican outside group. The not-quite-clever premise is a single woman telling how she “fell in love” with an unspecified man’s “online profile” but now says the “relationship is in trouble” because of his failed promises. “He’s great at promises,” she huffs.
This ad tries to bluntly change the subject from reproductive freedom: “He thinks the only thing I care about is free birth control, but he won’t even let me keep my own doctor.” Then — surprise! — it turns out Barack Obama was online suitor.
Both of these ads also miss a larger point. They brusquely dismiss the concerns many women have about losing their reproductive freedom, and then decree what issues women should otherwise prioritize.
We praised Cory Gardner’s approach to contraceptives because he discussed it as a policy issue. Other male candidates for senate soon jumped on board with Garnder’s idea of over-the-counter sales of contraceptives.
Planned Parenthood opposes the Gardner proposal. Planned Parenthood does not want to help women gain access to cheaper contraceptives and also be able to forgo unnecessary doctor visits because Planned Parenthood does not want to lose profits. One would think GOP women candidates in a unified voice would lambaste Planned Parenthood and also support over-the-counter sales of contraceptives. But where are these Republican women? Where is this ad? Where is this counter-attack?
Republicans are violating the “customer is always right” maxim. You can’t tell a woman that her values are wrong if you want her vote. To reach these voters, candidates need to either address the substance of those concerns, or at least find a way to disagree without being dismissive of them.
Republicans can’t seem to communicate with women and when they try they speak down like less suave, less charmant , less talented versions of Henry Higgins to Eliza. There will be consequences.
Finally, the ads make the problem worse by depicting women as two-dimensional caricatures. When watching “Dating Profile,” you can almost see the men behind the curtain concluding that the only way to get single women to talk politics is to first talk about dating.
The latest transgression comes from the College Republican National Committee, which just cut nearly identical ads for six GOP gubernatorial candidates spoofing the bridal shop reality TV show “Say Yes to the Dress.” In “Say Yes to the Candidate,” a young bride-to-be named Brittany peruses a line of wedding dresses as she says, “Budget is a big deal for me now that I’ve just graduated from college.” In the Florida version, she gushes, “The ‘Rick Scott’ is perfect” because he’s a “trusted brand … with new ideas that don’t break your budget.”
Today’s Republicans should take a cue from Eisenhower. Simply go on the street with a camera, ask women if they’re voting Republican and, if so, why? Just maybe, the party will get some good answers, and learn something about what women voters actually want.
Don’t talk to women. Speak with women. Start with women candidates in conversation with voters. Start with GOP women candidates together. A picture is worth more than words.
[Hint for Republicans: Have one of your interns rewrite this article but substitute “gays” for “women”. Then have the intern do another version this time for “African-Americans”. Then try another one for “Latinos”. It’s about communication skills and letting everyone know you care and want their vote and will organize your candidates to make as diverse an appeal as possible. Convince everyone your policies are the best. After Obama that should be really easy. Try it also for “white working class” males and “middle class families”. After the intern is done with the rewrites, implement the words into actions. Soon you’ll have a governing majority in Mainstreet U.S.A.]