Sarah Palin’s PAC released their latest organizing-fundraising video today, and it bolsters Palin’s efforts to claim the female voter demographic as her own. In the past, the media have tried to come up with cute ways of pigeonholing women, especially suburban wives and mothers who are seen as a big swing force in national elections. Twenty years ago, they were called “soccer moms”; in the wake of 9/11, “security moms”. Palin picks a more active — and activist — monicker for the women who comprise her base:
“Mama grizzlies” actually fits better in the Tea Party movement, which I’ve argued is driven in the main by activist women. These are women with families who aren’t focused on what government can do for them, but what government should be doing, period. They’re defending their turf rather than looking for handouts, and defending their children from expansionist government and the massive spending that their children’s children will have to repay. It’s a good brand to stake out for Palin, but she’s been doing that all along with the Tea Party movement (as has Michele Bachmann). This just puts a label on it, and one that sounds much more assertive than “soccer moms” did.
The Boss Emeritus offers some savvy advice:
Yes, there’s always a risk in overreaching and slipping into identity politics. Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosiboth played the gender card to argue that they had the unique ability as women to “clean house” and change Washington’s ways. It’s not working out as advertised, to put it mildly.
Moreover, conservatives need to be honest: Not all Republican women are created equal. An establishment Big Government GOP candidate in a skirt is no better than an establishment Big Government GOP candidate in a suit and tie.
That said, there is something happenin’ out there — on college campuses, at Tea Party and 9/12 meetings, in school board and city council races, inside and outside the political arena. Everywhere I go, right-thinking moms who had never been involved in politics before have come up to me to let me know that their increasing concern for their kids’ future — their safety, their education, their debt — has driven them to get involved.
Be sure to read her flashback column from almost exactly six years ago on this same topic.