Hillary Clinton's problem with men

The swing-state polling is a mir­ror im­age of her na­tion­al num­bers. Last week, Quin­nipi­ac found Clin­ton’s neg­at­ive rat­ings with white men at a stun­ning 72 per­cent—sig­ni­fic­antly worse than the Demo­crat­ic Party’s already-ser­i­ous struggles with that demo­graph­ic group. Mean­while, she’s not per­form­ing at nearly a strong-enough level with wo­men to coun­ter­act the prob­lem. Only 49 per­cent of wo­men viewed her fa­vor­ably in the poll, with 47 per­cent hold­ing neg­at­ive views. For all the self-in­flic­ted prob­lems that Re­pub­lic­ans have in reach­ing out to a di­ver­si­fy­ing coun­try, Hil­lary Clin­ton’s fa­vor­ab­il­ity with white men is worse than Jeb Bush’s with His­pan­ics, Ben Car­son’s with Afric­an-Amer­ic­ans, and Carly Fior­ina’s with wo­men in the same sur­vey.

In­deed, in poll after poll, both Biden and Sanders run much more com­pet­it­ively against Re­pub­lic­an chal­lengers, al­most en­tirely be­cause they don’t turn off half of the elect­or­ate.  

If Clin­ton is look­ing to nar­row the gap­ing gender gap, she isn’t show­ing it. In­stead, her cam­paign looks to be do­ing the op­pos­ite—ral­ly­ing her lib­er­al base and try­ing to lock down sup­port­ers that once seemed squarely in her camp. She sat down for an in­ter­view last week with Girls cre­at­or Lena Dun­ham, where she un­der­scored her fem­in­ist bona fides. She’s ap­peared on tele­vi­sion shows with a siz­able fe­male audi­ence, in­clud­ing El­len, in hopes of mak­ing her look more re­lat­able. Her call for ro­bust gun con­trol in the wake of the Ore­gon school shoot­ing isn’t go­ing to make her any friends with Demo­crat­ic gun own­ers, who are dis­pro­por­tion­ately male. The early dia­gnos­is from the cam­paign is that she’s un­der­achiev­ing with wo­men—her nat­ur­al base—and that’s the most cru­cial short-term fix, not the dis­mal show­ing with men.