GOP can’t win the ‘War on Women’ if they don’t fight it

posted at 2:01 pm on July 1, 2014 by Noah Rothman

This week, Democrats received something they desperately needed and have spent months struggling to manufacture: an issue that will get their base voters excited about turning out in November.

The Supreme Court’s decision in the Hobby Lobby case was not sweeping, rested on existing law, and cannot reasonably be construed as an example of judicial activism. That is not stopping the usual suspects from declaring it a step towards theocracy and the legalization of discrimination against women.

“This isn’t a win for religious liberty,” The New Republic’s Brian Beutler wrote, “it’s an affirmation of privilege for advocates of conservative sexual morality.”

“Yesterday, we saw five old conservative men tell women that discrimination against women is not discrimination at all, it’s just religious freedom,” Mic.com Senior Editor Elizabeth Plank told MSNBC. “Now we have more old, conservative men telling women – the 27 million women who’ve already benefited from this birth control mandate – that this might just go away.”

MSNBC.com’s Irin Carmon offered the best synopsis of how the Hobby Lobby decision fits into the grand Democratic strategy aimed at energizing liberal women: “The context of this is an all-out assault on access to contraception and access to other reproductive health care services.”

And Democrats are not letting this godsend of an opportunity pass them by.

“The Supreme Court ruled today that some bosses can now withhold contraceptive care from their employees’ health care coverage based on their own religious views that their employees may not even share,” White House Press Sec. Josh Earnest said in a statement rife with sins of omission.

“Can’t believe we live in a world where we’d even consider letting big corps deny women access to basic care based on vague moral objections,” wrote an outraged Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

“[The] Supreme Court took an outrageous step against the rights of America’s women,” Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) echoed.

“This is the reason women need to vote in the midterm elections,” Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI) added. “In order to protect their health.”

Many Republicans and conservatives will dismiss these hyperbolic, logically deficient, and morally vacuous statements offhand. They will see them as baseless, cynical, overwrought, and unworthy of the precious breath that would be expended in refuting them. And in a perfect world, they would be right.

But it is not a perfect world, and it does not take much effort to find examples that support this axiom.

In January, The Federalist’s Daniel Payne fumed over U.S. News and World Report journalist Susan Milligan equating Mike Huckabee’s infamous “uncle sugar” comment with rampant, legally protected gang rape in India. “That sort of thing doesn’t happen here. But similar attitudes are on display, albeit in a tamer way,” she wrote in reference to Huckabee.

Yet drawing a parallel between the India gang-rape and Mike Huckabee’s statements is entirely incomprehensible, and indicative not only of a journalist’s poor analytical skills but, as well, how successful the “narrative” of the War on Women has been. It has been a stunning success, one of which it is difficult to find a corollary, and one that has been wholly bolstered by the current legal dust-up over the birth control mandate.

Payne is correct to call the Democratic strategy of stoking a sense of victimhood among women a success, though some conservatives disagree.

In a compelling bit of analysis in The Wall Street Journal in April, conservative radio host Michael Medved argued that the War on Women was an electoral failure. Based on his parsing of the 2012 exit polling, Medved noted that Mitt Romney won white and married women, and that Obama’s edge came from minority voters of both gender. He insists that the GOP should be focused on appealing to minority voters rather than single women.

That may be true in a presidential election and the GOP should be reaching out to all voters of every demographic. Polling this year, however, indicates that women may end up being central to Democratic efforts to retain control of the Senate.

Via NBC News:

Turning from the White House and Congress to yesterday’s big Hobby Lobby decision at the Supreme Court, we observed that Democratic candidates seemed more excited to talk about the Hobby Lobby case than immigration. Of course, one of main reasons is that the Latino vote will only be a factor in one Senate contest THIS November: Colorado’s. But women — whether they live in Arkansas, Iowa, Michigan, or Oregon — are going to be the key voting bloc this year, and Democrats see the Hobby Lobby case and contraception in general as wedge issues with female voters. Indeed, back in our March 2014 NBC/WSJ poll, 48% of men said that employers should be able to be exempt from covering birth control on religious grounds, while 46% of them said they should NOT be exempt. By comparison, nearly six-in-10 women — 59% — said employers should NOT be exempt, versus 35% who said they should. Overall in that NBC/WSJ poll, 53% of all respondents said employers should not be exempt, and 41% said they should be exempt.

Republicans stand to lose more than they will gain by being casted, however unfairly, as the party opposed to common contraceptives. A few solidly conservative lawmakers know good politics when they see it and have begun openly supporting loosened restrictions on access to non-emergency contraceptive medication. Louisiana’s Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal and Colorado Senate candidate and Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO) are already supportive of a measure which would allow for over-the-counter access to oral contraceptives.

“Making oral contraceptives available over the counter would also be safe, according to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists,” the Washington Examiner’s Philip Klein wrote. “Philosophically, it’s consistent with limited government principles. It removes unnecessary government regulations and increases choice. It doesn’t impose new burdens on businesses or religious institutions, nor does it require an increase in government health care spending.”

The argument against combating the War on Women narrative with proactive and empathetic approach to the issues young suburban and exurban women regard as critical is a bit like hoping that conspicuous lump you just noticed will simply go away. Many Republicans feel even acknowledging these attacks on their party as being wholly opposed to family planning lends them undeserved legitimacy. Still others believe the party would be better off not appealing to a voting bloc for whom access to taxpayer-funded contraceptives is of primary importance.

That is a small-tent strategy. Like it or not, many young women believe that Republicans are hostile to their wellbeing, and no one is willing to listen to you if they think you don’t care about what is important to them or look down on their life choices. If there is one lesson from the Obama years that the GOP must internalize, it is that the party’s core coalition is not large enough to win the presidency. A double-digit gender gap in favor of Democrats will almost always deliver the White House. Party building is a project for the off years. If the GOP waits for 2016 to appeal to nontraditional GOP voters, it will already be too late.

A conflict of necessity rather than one of choice, the GOP must mount a counteroffensive in the War on Women. Unfounded as those attacks on the party may be, they will fire up a deeply dispirited Democratic base and may rescue Obama’s imperiled second term.

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.


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Comment pages: 1 2

The only fight the GOP is interested in is with the TEA Party.

ConstantineXI on July 1, 2014 at 2:04 PM

….the stupid…party!

JugEarsButtHurt on July 1, 2014 at 2:04 PM

The GOP only fights its base.

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:05 PM

Hypocrites unite

The only Nays for the RFRA were

NAYs —3
Byrd (D-WV)
Helms (R-NC)
Mathews (D-TN)

All other 97 were Yays, including:

Biden (D-DE)
Boxer (D-CA)
Daschle (D-SD)
Dodd (D-CT)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Harkin (D-IA)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)
Kohl (D-WI)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (D-CT)
Metzenbaum (D-OH)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Mitchell (D-ME)
Moseley-Braun (D-IL)
Moynihan (D-NY)
Murray (D-WA)
Nunn (D-GA)
Packwood (R-OR)
Pell (D-RI)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reid (D-NV)
Riegle (D-MI)
Robb (D-VA)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Roth (R-DE)
Sarbanes (D-MD)
Sasser (D-TN)
Shelby (D-AL)
Simon (D-IL)
Wellstone (D-MN)
Wofford (D-PA)

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:08 PM

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

That won’t happen without all of the old white men dying 5 years ago.

nobar on July 1, 2014 at 2:08 PM

“Can’t believe we live in a world where we’d even consider letting big corps deny women access to basic care based on vague moral objections,” wrote an outraged Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

Oh, my, whatever did women do for their birth control before ObamaCare came along?

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:08 PM

Hardly worth fighting if the expectation of young female voters is that the government will make sure it is free for them.

Snowblind on July 1, 2014 at 2:08 PM

Yesterday had nothing to do with contraception, fools.

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:08 PM

Get ready for the bigger case.

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:09 PM

This week, Democrats and the politburo media received something they desperately needed and have spent months struggling to manufacture

…let me help complete that sentence!

JugEarsButtHurt on July 1, 2014 at 2:09 PM

Why do I think this is all hyped up by the media who have nothing else to pump up the midterms?
Wendy Davis’ campaign in Texas is practically braindead and ready for the plug to be pulled.
As for the national Republicans, they insist in putting Senate “196 year old farts” front and center as Beck described it. I HOPE they get taught a lesson. I’m not voting for them.

Marcus on July 1, 2014 at 2:09 PM

What if they held a War on Women and no one showed up? Or what if the VA had all the resources it needed and women had to hold bake sales to buy their birth control?

Flange on July 1, 2014 at 2:10 PM

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

Abortion is driving this. Contraception is just the dog whistle. As always. Guess Republicans have to make a choice, huh?

butch on July 1, 2014 at 2:11 PM

More hand wringing…….

d1carter on July 1, 2014 at 2:11 PM

A win is only a win if the press reports it.

The average lo info person thinks the evil GOP did something racist against Obama this week.

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:12 PM

A conflict of necessity rather than one of choice, the GOP must mount a counteroffensive in the War on Women. Unfounded as those attacks on the party may be, they will fire up a deeply dispirited Democratic base and may rescue Obama’s imperiled second term.

(Stupid) Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

The Rs are too busy fighting their base, dude.

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:13 PM

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

And what, pray tell, would you suggest that reason be? More free goodies to Julia?

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:13 PM

We can’t possibly win a battle to save the wymynzes from those who are actually trying to enslave them (Dems), when they have aligned themselves with the real enemy.

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:13 PM

No, it doesn’t motivate the Democrat base. The Democrats are exhausted of ideas. They are spent and done.

John the Libertarian on July 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

How about if the conservatives wage a war FOR women – to get them to see that the conservative way is the way that will ensure they get equal pay for equal work – that the word “equal” is the operative word for both sides of the equation. That women take charge of their own health by taking charge of who is paying for their medicines, etc. Women are able to work anywhere, they do not have to work for a company if the woman does not like the benefits – that is what a man does.

evie1949 on July 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Monica will be Hillary’s Fluke at the 2016 convention. Bill will be in the middle, proud protector to both.

Congratulations ‘free’ women of America. You truly are incredibly subjugated hags.

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

This whole stinking conversation just reiterates just how awful the lack of honest conversation really is. Everyone with a drum to beat uses misinformation and outright lies to score a point or two.

Until we can have honesty in any of our issues, we’re sunk as a country. Is it really that much to ask?

SteveInRTP on July 1, 2014 at 2:15 PM

I think we now know whose hand is inside the Ned Pepper sock.

CurtZHP on July 1, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Many Republicans and conservatives will dismiss these hyperbolic, logically deficient, and morally vacuous statements offhand. They will see them as baseless, cynical, overwrought, and unworthy of the precious breath that would be expended in refuting them.

And they’d be right on the first three. However, silence in response to an absurd attack is no longer culturally considered “remaining above the fray,” but a tacit concession, and so it is worthy not merely of a response, but for the GOP to launch their own offensives. (Why does the GOP always want to play defense?)

Still others believe the party would be better off not appealing to a voting bloc for whom access to taxpayer-funded contraceptives is of primary importance.

That is a small-tent strategy. Like it or not, many young women believe that Republicans are hostile to their wellbeing, and no one is willing to listen to you if they think you don’t care about what is important to them or look down on their life choices.

Some “life choices” are worth looking down on. The key is not to retreat, but to make a principled, coherent, rational case for our positions, and to repeatedly point out how deranged and hyperbolic the Sandra Flukes of the world are.

Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:18 PM

This week, Democrats received something they desperately needed and have spent months struggling to manufacture: an issue that will get their base voters excited about turning out in November.

There is no way of describing this statement other than stupid. Wishful and hopeful interpretation of the SCOTUS rulings as a means to rally stupid shrill rabid women to the Democrat cause.

And the solution is not pandering these stupid single-issue voters by affirming that the world revolves around their birth canal. The solution is to make it clear that the economy, jobs, education, etc. are womens’ issues of far more importance than free contraception.

Happy Nomad on July 1, 2014 at 2:19 PM

What if they held a War on Women and no one showed up? Or what if the VA had all the resources it needed and women had to hold bake sales to buy their birth control?

Flange on July 1, 2014 at 2:10 PM

I can think of a couple more appropriate ways they could raise money for that…..

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Monica will be Hillary’s Fluke at the 2016 convention. Bill will be in the middle, proud protector to both.

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Monica would make a great Senate candidate.

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

I really wish we’d stop carrying the Liberals water for them in catering to minority demographics and focus on issues that pertain to all Americans.

lineholder on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

If the GOP waits for 2016 to appeal to nontraditional GOP voters, it will already be too late.

We don’t want to appeal to them. We want to convert them.

Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

We don’t want to appeal to them. We want to convert them.

Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

We want to liberate them from their Progressive slavery.

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:21 PM

That is a small-tent strategy. Like it or not, many young women believe that Republicans are hostile to their wellbeing, and no one is willing to listen to you if they think you don’t care about what is important to them or look down on their life choices.

That’s a lot of words to describe the desire to pander.

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:22 PM

Schadenfreude on July 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Isn’t it the truth? The Sexual Revolution of the 1960s and 70s, and the really horrible leadership of the feminist movement during that time and in the years since, have wreaked so much havoc in our society and set respect for women back decades.

It’s beyond irritating at times that young women have no comprehension of what has been lost due to the zealots in the feminist movement.

lineholder on July 1, 2014 at 2:23 PM

(Why does the GOP always want to play defense?)
Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Maybe they really believe the football maxim that “defense wins championships” – even though it’s not always true, and especially not in politics.

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:24 PM

That is a small-tent strategy. Like it or not, many young women believe that Republicans are hostile to their wellbeing

Women like big tents

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:24 PM

This week, Democrats received something they desperately needed and have spent months struggling to manufacture: an issue that will get their base voters excited about turning out in November.

Oh please.

If this is all democrats have, then they’re really toast. Harping on this non-issue makes democrats look totally weak and desperate. This drama will fade quickly.

Pork-Chop on July 1, 2014 at 2:25 PM

trategy

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:25 PM

I support insurance coverage for abortifacients and I vote!

It’s what made this country great./

mankai on July 1, 2014 at 2:28 PM

I can think of a couple more appropriate ways they could raise money for that…..

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

So can I, but I was mocking some anti-war bumper stickers I’ve seen over the years.

Flange on July 1, 2014 at 2:29 PM

The problem the GOP has with single women voters is the same problem it has with minorities. The message of smaller government and entitlement reform doesn’t appeal to them. Especially with the economy as bad as it is. The idea of the gravy train being rolled back scares these voters and motivates them to go to the polls(case in point, the Cochran runoff win).

I honestly don’t know how the GOP can overcome that other than to do everything they can to turn out their own base(instead of attacking and smearing them). Eventually one would hope when the gravy train does stop due to the fact that we’re flat broke, these voters will realize that the Dems can no longer hand out free goodies and will be forced to reevaluate who they vote for. Until that day though, we’re trying to beat Santa Claus at the polls which is no easy task.

Doughboy on July 1, 2014 at 2:30 PM

I thought lefty wymynzes were all about the gay and lesbian cause these days.
Why would they need birth control?

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:32 PM

So can I, but I was mocking some anti-war bumper stickers I’ve seen over the years.

Flange on July 1, 2014 at 2:29 PM

Ya, I got that.
But I just had to add a different twist to it……

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:33 PM

The problem the GOP has with single women voters is the same problem it has with minorities. The message of smaller government and entitlement reform doesn’t appeal to them.

Doughboy on July 1, 2014 at 2:30 PM

Precisely.

They are essentially married to Uncle Sam. They aren’t going to be receptive to Uncle Sam getting a pay cut.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 2:34 PM

Women like big tents

faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:24 PM

Hey, hey, hey! It’s not the size of the tent… Okay, I’m lying, women like a big tent but too big of a tent is also a negative.

Men. Can’t live with them… Wait. What are we talking about?

Fallon on July 1, 2014 at 2:35 PM

“Yesterday, we saw five old conservative men tell women that discrimination against women is not discrimination at all, it’s just religious freedom,”

Today we saw hordes of old hippies tell us that paying for your own contraceptives is not just personal responsibility, it’s an all-out war on half of the country.

Socratease on July 1, 2014 at 2:36 PM

GOP can’t win the ‘War on Women’ if they don’t fight it

Really? Almost all of the women in my family find the Democrats tactics to be demeaning, insulting and patronizing.

Is there something you’ve read which actually is intellectually challenging and backed by facts?

People hate Washington and they hate Republicans because they do not fight for us. Nor do they have any passion that isn’t politically motivated. But the so-called “war on women” is a political strawman created by Democrats for votes. Period.

Requires a response? Yes- gut wrenching laughter.

The only people falling for that are their voters already committed to agreeing with whatever they say. There are very few smart, cogitative, intelligent women buying this nonsense at face value.

Marcus Traianus on July 1, 2014 at 2:36 PM

….the stupid…party!
JugEarsButtHurt on July 1, 2014 at 2:04 PM

“JugEarsButtHurt” is the notorious, obscene, banned commenter “KoolAid2.”

We don’t want to appeal to them. We want to convert them.
Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

We want to liberate them from their Progressive slavery.
faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:21 PM

Well said!

bluegill on July 1, 2014 at 2:38 PM

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans. It is incumbent on the GOP to give them a reason to rethink that position.

Sure… Get f*** as much as you want and the tax payers will pay for your contraceptives and abortions… Is this the f***ing message that you want the Republicans to “young women”?… If not please enlighten us with the f***ing correct message…

mnjg on July 1, 2014 at 2:38 PM

But I just had to add a different twist to it……

dentarthurdent on July 1, 2014 at 2:33 PM

Ah, it’s a twister.

Flange on July 1, 2014 at 2:38 PM

The only people falling for that are their voters already committed to agreeing with whatever they say. There are very few smart, cogitative, intelligent women buying this nonsense at face value.

Marcus Traianus on July 1, 2014 at 2:36 PM

I totally agree… What these so called political analyst on our side cannot understand is that people who believe in crap like this never voted Republicans before and will never vote Republicans under any circumstances…

mnjg on July 1, 2014 at 2:40 PM

This week, Democrats received something they desperately needed and have spent months struggling to manufacture: an issue that will get their base voters excited about turning out in November.

And just what is that issue. They are not taking away a woman’s legal right to acquire some of these birth control measures. Just taking away a women’s ability to force someone else to violate their religious convictions and provide some of these more radical birth control procedures or medicines to them for free.

Buckshots on July 1, 2014 at 2:41 PM

We don’t want to appeal to them. We want to convert them.
Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM
We want to liberate them from their Progressive slavery.
faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:21 PM

If they believe this crap they never voted for our side and they will never vote for our side no matter what we do…

mnjg on July 1, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Really? Almost all of the women in my family find the Democrats tactics to be demeaning, insulting and patronizing.

Marcus Traianus on July 1, 2014 at 2:36 PM

That’s because it is demeaning, insulting and patronizing. It implies and conveys that women can only be addressed within the context of an indentity that is based on their gender rather than on the context of being mentally capable of recognizing and responding appropriately to sociopolitical issues.

It’s a mindset that says women are capable of little and have to be treated as victims every minute of their lives under the protection of a so-called benevolent government.

It’s a mindset that asks little of women in terms of accepting responsibilities and making a positive contribution to society as a whole.

Women have much more to offer than society than Liberals would like for women to think they are capable of offering!!!

lineholder on July 1, 2014 at 2:42 PM

Yeah, because Sandra Fluke was that close to being a Republican.

corona79 on July 1, 2014 at 2:42 PM

The left continues it’s proud tradition of infantalizing constituency groups.

gwelf on July 1, 2014 at 2:44 PM

Dems misinterpret the ruling and the youngins will believe them

Bizarro world

cmsinaz on July 1, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Correction to sign. When STUPID women vote, Democrats win. When SMART women vote, Republicans win.

As condoms are over the counter, let birth control pills be over the counter. Have the Republicans promote it. Insurance generally does not cover over the counter medications.

Problem solved.

talkingpoints on July 1, 2014 at 2:47 PM

We don’t want to appeal to them. We want to convert them.
Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM
We want to liberate them from their Progressive slavery.
faraway on July 1, 2014 at 2:21 PM

They are incorrigible. The want free stuff. They want a life of no consequences for their actions. Forget about the liberal/progressive drones and don’t waste a second on them. I concentrate on the reasonable yet, for some unknown reason, not engaged individuals.

Buckshots on July 1, 2014 at 2:47 PM

mnjg on July 1, 2014 at 2:41 PM

That isn’t necessarily true. I was a first generation female exposed to the influence of the Sexual Revolution back in the 60s and 70s, and I can tell you for a fact that wiser women than myself had their lives totally screwed up because of the manner in which moral and ethical values got turned on their heads. It was an influence in society that a lot of women were deceived by, and the outcomes of that deceit had a negative impact on society as a whole.

But once the manner in which I had been deceived was revealed, my worldview changed drastically.

A lot of young women in American society today are second and third generation females living under the influence of that deceit who have yet to come to the realize the manner in which they have been deceived. There is still hope for them yet!

lineholder on July 1, 2014 at 2:48 PM

This is not the hill to die on. We must get this off the table and let the dems have this one. Surrender is the only way to win. If we just give up and surrender enough times, victory will be ours.

xblade on July 1, 2014 at 2:51 PM

In other words, conservatives should try (and fail) to win the votes of stupid people who believe the GOP is out to harm women by passing some legislation for which dems will receive all credit?

They may be that stupid and that desperate. I don’t care. The GOP is dead to me.

ROCnPhilly on July 1, 2014 at 2:52 PM

The problem the GOP has with single women voters is the same problem it has with minorities. The message of smaller government and entitlement reform doesn’t appeal to them. Especially with the economy as bad as it is. The idea of the gravy train being rolled back scares these voters and motivates them to go to the polls(case in point, the Cochran runoff win).

I honestly don’t know how the GOP can overcome that other than to do everything they can to turn out their own base(instead of attacking and smearing them). Eventually one would hope when the gravy train does stop due to the fact that we’re flat broke, these voters will realize that the Dems can no longer hand out free goodies and will be forced to reevaluate who they vote for. Until that day though, we’re trying to beat Santa Claus at the polls which is no easy task.

Doughboy on July 1, 2014 at 2:30 PM

This.

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:57 PM

The GOP has already lost the perception war when it comes to Women’s reproductive health issues.

The new GOP platform – “All your vaginas are ours” – is not going to work.

Hobby Lobby will prove to be a pyrrhic, short-lived victory as more and more women realize that this “war on women” that Dems have been saying is a real thing.

Fairly or unfairly, GOP is doomed long term.

As the author rightly points out:

Young, single women are too often willing to assume the worst of Republicans.

That is the Todd Akin, Richard Mourdock, Rick Santorum, “Binders full of women” effect accumulated over the last several years.

It will be very, very difficult to shake that image off. GOP’s brand on Women’s health is regressive, medieval, backward and not in tune with 21st century. The country and the world has moved on.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 2:57 PM

That is a small-tent strategy.

Is it a small-tent strategy when the democrat party doesn’t listen to republicans and shows that they don’t care about what is important to them or look down on their life choices?

xblade on July 1, 2014 at 3:01 PM

All birth control pills are not the same. Could they match the right pill to the woman? It might actually cut down on abortion.

Cindy Munford on July 1, 2014 at 3:03 PM

(Why does the GOP always want to play defense?)

Stoic Patriot on July 1, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Because they don’t really believe in any conservative issues and most of them like progressivism, and are convinced progressivism is ultra-popular. There’s also a good chunk that are just plain bought and paid for.

The argument that the GOP must drop “issue X” or fall out of step with the public is one that should have been tossed in the trash heap ages ago but hasn’t. I don’t especially care about the Hobby Lobby case, but it’s very easy to make these same ridiculous arguments Noah made above for tax cuts, spending cuts, gun rights, and every single core conservative issue.

The people who are always telling us we need to drop “issue X” and purge “voting bloc Y” need to spell out what their platform really is. The fact that they manifestly refuse to do tells me that either they don’t have a platform or their platform is essentially indistinguishable from that of the Democrats.

Precisely.

They are essentially married to Uncle Sam. They aren’t going to be receptive to Uncle Sam getting a pay cut.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 2:34 PM

What we SHOULD be doing is not worrying about being popular with Democrats and cutting government to shrink this class of people that are dependent on Uncle Sam, in a mirror image of the Democrat strategy to increase poverty and dependence. Of course, since the GOP likes progressivism, they refuse to do it.

Doomberg on July 1, 2014 at 3:03 PM

The women that are going to vote FOR the Dim party solely based on their mistaken belief that employers should have to pay for THEIR abortions, would NEVER have voted for the GOP ANYWAY.

I don’t WANT my tent big enough for those that are not only supportive of INFANTICIDE, but want ME to PAY FOR IT. Those people SHOULD be outside the GOP tent!

Meople on July 1, 2014 at 3:05 PM

What we SHOULD be doing is not worrying about being popular with Democrats and cutting government to shrink this class of people that are dependent on Uncle Sam, in a mirror image of the Democrat strategy to increase poverty and dependence. Of course, since the GOP likes progressivism, they refuse to do it.

Doomberg on July 1, 2014 at 3:03 PM

Yup. We should also work the emotional angle as well. A great number of these types of voters act on emotions more than anything else. They aren’t going to be reasoned out of a belief they were never reasoned into.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 3:10 PM

The fact is, there’ll be something even more devastating to the Choom Gang between now and November that will depress the Demos (probably several more (9/11 redux, anyone?)), so Noah’s looking for miracles here.

formwiz on July 1, 2014 at 3:10 PM

The country and the world has moved on.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 2:57 PM

Moved on to what?

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:11 PM

It is truly sad to see outright desperation among some in conservative circles to “appeal to women”. Memo to conservatives : You may as well appeal to unicorns.

Look at how the DemocraParty has demagogued the Hobby Lobby case to death – in spite of the fact that Hobby Lobby does offer SIXTEEN types of contraception coverage, we are suddenly told that women’s rights have been taken away by a religious theocracy !!!

But here is the worst part – all this demagoguery works. There are A LOT of American women who will fall for this utter nonsense because they are not too bright to begin with. That is precisely why people like Hillary , Wendy Davis and Sandra WHAT THE FLUK are “heroines” to them.

As a thought experiment, imagine these same arguments being thrown at women all over the world. How many of them will fall for this nonsense ? (full disclosure: I am Indian and imho most indian women would laugh at the preposterous idea of demanding that their employers sponsor their sex lives)

And conservatives are supposed to appeal to these women ? For whom , any issue that deals with sex is the be all and end all of their political beliefs??

C’mon now. Admit it. You are so screwed.

nagee76 on July 1, 2014 at 3:11 PM

What a worthless Effing article.

Yeah, I’ll tell you what! those GOPers sure want to fight
back against this War on Womens meme.

Why just ask a certain woman from Alaska!
Hell, they defended her tooth and nail baby!!!

They don’t give a rat’s azz about anything except getting Elected!

ToddPA on July 1, 2014 at 3:14 PM

What we SHOULD be doing is not worrying about being popular with Democrats and cutting government to shrink this class of people that are dependent on Uncle Sam, in a mirror image of the Democrat strategy to increase poverty and dependence. Of course, since the GOP likes progressivism, they refuse to do it.

Doomberg on July 1, 2014 at 3:03 PM

Yup. We should also work the emotional angle as well. A great number of these types of voters act on emotions more than anything else. They aren’t going to be reasoned out of a belief they were never reasoned into.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 3:10 PM

Truer words were never spoken.

nagee76 on July 1, 2014 at 3:15 PM

Moved on to what?

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:11 PM

Moved on to a world where contraception is not an issue. Employer’s religious belief should not affect employees able to receive all forms of contraception through their insurance.

Religious beliefs can be wrong..stupidly wrong. Not too long ago, many had strong religious belief that the earth was at the center of universe.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:17 PM

the GOP must mount a counteroffensive in the War on Women

Considering that McCain lost the non-married women vote to Obama
70 to 29% and Romney didn’t do much better, losing the vote of non-married women to Obama again, 67 to 31%…I’d say a counteroffensive is long overdue.

lynncgb on July 1, 2014 at 3:20 PM

A conflict of necessity rather than one of choice, the GOP must mount a counteroffensive in the War on Women.

I’ve yet to hear a coherent counter-strategy that isn’t dismissed out of hand.

For example, “personal responsibility and self-reliance.” Too preachy.

de rigueur on July 1, 2014 at 3:22 PM

Employer’s religious belief should not affect employees able to receive all forms of contraception through their insurance.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:17 PM

Pay for your own sexcapades.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 3:23 PM

ConstantineXI on July 1, 2014 at 2:04 PM

Bitter Clinger on July 1, 2014 at 2:05 PM

Truer words were never spoken…

lucyvanpelt on July 1, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Republicans think November is theirs, but women have other ideas

The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll isn’t good news for President Barack Obama. On the other hand, he’s not running for re-election. On the other hand, Republicans are, and the data is brutal.
Hillary Clinton: 44 positive, 37 negative, +7
Democratic Party: 38 positive , 40 negative, -2
Barack Obama: 41 positive, 45 negative, -4
Republican Party: 29 positive, 45 negative, -16
Tea Party: 22 positive, 41 negative, -19

Republicans might have a better chance of taking advantage of Obama’s weak numbers if, you know, their own numbers weren’t in the gutter. And we don’t need to throw Republicans any anvils as long as the tea party is doing it for us. Meanwhile, women hold the keys to November.

Republicans are in worse shape now than they were four years ago, too [...] Views of the Tea Party are even worse, with 22% seeing it in a favorable light and 41% in a negative one. In June 2010, the Tea Party’s fav/unfav was at a positive 34%-31%. That perhaps helps explain why Democrats in our current NBC/WSJ poll have a two-point advantage on congressional preference, 45%-43%, despite the brutal numbers for Obama. And then there’s this BIG difference: At this point in 2010, Democrats had a narrow congressional-preference lead with women (44%-43%), and the GOP had a significant advantage with white women (51%-36%). Now? Democrats hold a double-digit with all women (50%-38%), and white women are pretty much a jump ball (GOP 45%, Dems 44%). As we’ve said before, female voters — and female candidates — are likely to decide the outcome of the midterm elections and specifically control of the U.S. Senate.

For the math lazy among us, that’s an 11-point gain among all women, and a 14-point gain among white women. More evidence of the power of the woman vote this year?

Democratic U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley leads Republican state Sen. Joni Ernst 44 percent to 40 percent in Iowa’s U.S. Senate race, a poll released this morning by Quinnipiac University shows [...]
Women back Braley 47 percent to 36 percent, while men back Ernst 44 percent to 40 percent.

More proof?

Terri Lynn Land’s polling drops even though she pointed out she’s a woman

Michigan Republican Senate candidate Terri Lynn Land’s “I’m a woman so I can’t possibly be part of a war on women (just don’t ask me about policy)” campaign platform does not appear to be working with voters. While Democrat Gary Peters’ lead over Land holds steady at five points, 41 percent to 36 percent, in the latest Public Policy Polling poll, Land’s favorables have dropped substantially. In April, 28 percent of voters viewed her favorably while 31 percent viewed her unfavorably. Now, it’s 32 percent favorable, 42 percent unfavorable.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:26 PM

“Can’t believe we live in a world where we’d even consider letting big corps deny women access to basic care based on vague moral objections,” wrote an outraged Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

These liberal women are a disgrace to my gender. No one is denying care to anyone and deeply held religious beliefs are not “vague moral objections.” Why is there not a single intelligent democrat woman?

fight like a girl on July 1, 2014 at 3:26 PM

nagee76 on July 1, 2014 at 3:15 PM

I didn’t mean to parrot you! Honest!

lucyvanpelt on July 1, 2014 at 3:28 PM

Yes, always a formula on which to build a strong society.
.
Cater to the manipulated stupidity of the masses to gain more warm bodies in the ruling body with your team’s label (R in this case)regardless of principle.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on July 1, 2014 at 3:30 PM

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:26 PM

I think we’ll just watch Wendy Davis sweep the boards in Texas first. May have implications for Congressional races. Oh, wait…

Her campaign manager, Karin Johanson, who helped engineer the Democratic takeover of Congress in 2006, left after about 30 weeks on the job…

de rigueur on July 1, 2014 at 3:34 PM

Moved on to a world where contraception is not an issue. Employer’s religious belief should not affect employees able to receive all forms of contraception through their insurance.

Religious beliefs can be wrong..stupidly wrong. Not too long ago, many had strong religious belief that the earth was at the center of universe.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:17 PM

Contraception wasn’t an issue until the democrats decided to force private business to subsidize sex lives. Insurance(including from religious schools and businesses) already paid for birth control used to treat disorders.

Democrats made it an issue. Anyone working for a company whose insurance doesn’t pay for birth control can do what they were doing before the phony war on women was invented … buy it themselves.

Also, lest you seriously misjudge the Bill of Rights … those tell the government what they can’t do to you. If you think slowly chipping away at them is a good thing you’re in for a world of butt hurt in the future.

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:35 PM

The data is brutal: the GOP has a real birth control problem

By a 2-1 margin, Americans support the contraceptive mandate in the Affordable Care Act, including 60 percent of independents and 78 percent of Democrats. Even among Republicans, just 56 percent oppose.

And like pretty much every other social issue today, age plays a huge role. Among 18-34-year-olds, 81 percent of women support it. Among seniors, just 51 percent do. And who do Democrats have a hard time turning out in midterms? Single, predominantly young women.

http://kff.org/womens-health-policy/poll-finding/data-note-differences-in-public-opinion-on-the-acas-contraceptive-coverage-requirement-by-gender-religion-and-political-party/

A plurality of REPUBLICAN women (46-45) also support the contraceptive mandate. That’s the reason that Democrats have cut into Republican support among white women. White women supported Republicans by a 51-36 in 2010. The latest polling has it 45-44 GOP, a massive 14-point swing. And that was before this Supreme Court decision. The War on Women has repercussions for Republicans.
The policy effects of Hobby Lobby are disastrous, but we now have an opportunity for women to take matters into their own hands, an increased impetus for electoral participation. This November, the choice is stark: there are candidates cheering this decision and agitating for increased restrictions on a woman’s right to control her reproductive system, and there are candidates who trust women with the freedom to make those choices for themselves.

Hobby Lobby is a dramatic reminder of what happens when Republicans win. It’s also an impetus to prevent that from happening this year, or ever again.

All the single ladies… If you like it than you better put a vote on it!

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:36 PM

My overriding takeaway from the Hobby Lobby ruling is how chillingly dismissive much of the country seems to be of religious liberties. Raise two generations away from church and the First Amendment doesn’t seem to mean as much to many anymore.

It’s mostly liberals, but I’ve seen some women I would have considered middle-of-the-road reacting in a frightening way that buys the demagoguery hook, line and sinker as well.

They rather comfortably have moved from “don’t impose your religious beliefs on my life” to “my impositions on your life shouldn’t be mitigated by your religious beliefs.”

FishingwFredo on July 1, 2014 at 3:37 PM

Many “single” women are women with children living on government assistance in the form of welfare, food stamps and medicaid. There is no way to make people who are dependent on government handouts to vote against the hand or party that feeds them.

fight like a girl on July 1, 2014 at 3:38 PM

I’m at a loss.

Noah is right, the liberals consciously set out to manufacture a new culture war around contraception, and they have succeeded and they are winning it. The Hobby Lobby decision just threw about 3 million gallons of gasoline on to the fire. It seems the entire GOP and the right were totally caught off guard by this play and still have no idea how to counter it.

My daughter showed me a tweet last night from a friend who was panicking because she heard “the Supreme Court just banned birth control pills.” These are the same young women who spread the rumor in 2012 that Mitt Romney wanted to ban tampons. (Yes, this was a thing, unless you have a teenage daughter you might not have heard about it but it was all over the place during the 2012 campaign.)

I’m not sure how you play offense in this war. The OTC contraception gambit is certainly one, though the leftwing media will play it as a cynical Hail Mary ploy. I think all we can do is play disciplined defense, try not to score any own-goals, and hope it all dies down by 2016. I don’t think we need to panic that this is going to produce some kind of massive turnout of single women in the Senate races this fall. It worked in Virginia because that was the only election of any consequence last year.

rockmom on July 1, 2014 at 3:39 PM

They rather comfortably have moved from “don’t impose your religious beliefs on my life” to “my impositions on your life shouldn’t be mitigated by your religious beliefs.”

FishingwFredo on July 1, 2014 at 3:37 PM

Excellent observation.

fight like a girl on July 1, 2014 at 3:40 PM

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Sorry, but you can leave us the hell out of your bedroom.

sharrukin on July 1, 2014 at 3:41 PM

Many “single” women are women with children living on government assistance in the form of welfare, food stamps and medicaid. There is no way to make people who are dependent on government handouts to vote against the hand or party that feeds them.

fight like a girl on July 1, 2014 at 3:38 PM

Wait until all the illegals start getting the same entitlements. Resources will be stretched.

Victim groups will fight for priority.

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:42 PM

This November, the choice is stark: there are candidates cheering this decision and agitating for increased restrictions on a woman’s right to control her reproductive system, and there are candidates who trust women with the freedom to make those choices for themselves.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Name a candidate that is agitating for increased restrictions on contraception. Just one.

This is ridiculous.

rockmom on July 1, 2014 at 3:42 PM

rockmom on July 1, 2014 at 3:42 PM

Ned is pretty much an idiot and typical of most liberals. They can recite propaganda all day but can’t explain what the propaganda means.

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:44 PM

Also keep in mind that this is a massive, massive effort by the liberals to change the subject from the horrible shrinking U.S. ecnomy, the continuing disaster of Obamacare, rising inflation, and the failure of the Obama foreign policy and growing threat or terrorist attacks in the U.S.

Let’s not help them out here.

rockmom on July 1, 2014 at 3:45 PM

rockmom on July 1, 2014 at 3:39 PM

No amount of defense is going to work on this issue as long as the Right has jerks like this talking about women and sex..

My religion trumps your “right”€ to employer subsidized consequence free sex.
— @EWErickson

There is no shortage of Todd Akins, Richard Mourdocks in GOP.

You say discipline? GOP men can’t help it.

Remember this?

Karen Hughes, Former Bush Adviser: If Another Republican Man Talks Rape, I’ll ‘Cut Out His Tongue’

When your party’s own women know GOP men have launched war on women, you know it is bad.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:46 PM

Motivates their base, nonsense, they’re always motivated. Their party is, after all, the catch basin for all odds and sundry that is psychologically damaged. Psychologically damaged somehow? Intellectually lazy? Control impulses? Well then, have we got a political party for you!

Look, Republicans were created because Whigs could not handle Democrat psychosis. And now in present day we find that Republicans cannot handle Democrat psychosis and so must dissolve, go away, or otherwise change completely. Democrats will always be here because psychosis will always be here. It cannot be fixed. But Republicans can be fixed. They can change. They must change into something else. To deal with ever present, always motivated, endlessly easily activated psychosis. The only reasonable answer involves great rending of clothing and gnashing of teeth. Prolonged and loud and constant wails of despair all around is a good sign.

bour3 on July 1, 2014 at 3:49 PM

When your party’s own women know GOP men have launched war on women, you know it is bad.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:46 PM

How is anything you listed a “war on women”?

darwin on July 1, 2014 at 3:50 PM

The fact is that single people are stupid and do stupid things. That’s the huge advantage of marriage (besides providing a secure environment for children). Married people are more employed, more successful, healthier, happier, commit fewer crimes, and own more stuff.

That’s because men and women together help stop each other from doing the stupid things they might do if single.

Single men take unnecessary risks and commit more crimes.

Single women vote for Democrats.

At least the single men usually do most harm to themselves instead of to society at large.

Adjoran on July 1, 2014 at 3:51 PM

This is pure slop analysis. Ask Teri Lyn Land in Michigan and Joni Ernst in Iowa about the “War on Women”.

DagoTwit on July 1, 2014 at 3:51 PM

Karen Hughes, as loyal a GOoPer as they come and Bush communications director,

“And if another Republican man says anything about rape other than it is a horrific, violent crime, I want to personally cut out his tongue,” she wrote. “The college-age daughters of many of my friends voted for Obama because they were completely turned off by Neanderthal comments like the suggestion of ‘legitimate rape.’”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1112/83632.html

I guess, Karen Hughes is a typical liberal idiot as well.

Ned Pepper on July 1, 2014 at 3:52 PM

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