WASHINGTON – The 2010 midterm elections brought gains for Republicans they hadn’t seen in decades. In fact, they evened the score with women. So, what did Republicans do? They breathed new energy into their war on women that’s been waging since the Supreme Court settled Griswold. With a lot of inspiration from the Stupak Amendment, Republicans began forcing unwanted procedures on women from state to state, hoping their war on women could do locally what they couldn’t accomplish federally.
The outcome hasn’t been what they’d hoped.
The latest USA/Gallup poll has more bad news for Republicans, this time the war on women sliming Romney, too.
While women typically are more likely to identify themselves as Democrats than men are, that difference widens to a chasm in the USA TODAY poll. By 41%-24%, women call themselves Democrats; men by 27%-25% say they’re Republicans. – A Widening Gender Gap Boosts Obama Over Romney
So far, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is the highest profile scalp his own party has taken for themselves. Humiliated in Virginia by the Republican transvaginal ultrasound probe legislation, McDonnell’s approval has plummeted. But there is worse news for Republicans in their war on women, where Virginia is concerned.
Voters say 72 – 21 percent that government should not make laws which try to convince women seeking an abortion to change their minds. – Quinnipiac
McDonnell was also on a very short vice presidential list for Mitt Romney, which the Romney campaign has to be rethinking, because McDonnell on the ticket brings a lot of baggage now, especially where women are concerned.
If only conservatives knew what the meaning of the word meant.
At one point in history it meant actually being conservative, which included not involving yourself in personal matters where you don’t belong. It meant that personal privacy had a place in the human rights philosophy of American politics.
Now, to be “conservative” means to believe you have the right to legislate through the state the actions of women, forcing us to comply with religious dictates that challenge U.S. law already established through the Supreme Court.
Joe Scarborough, everyone’s morning infotainment host favorite and representative warm and fuzzy Republican, made the case when Pres. Obama introduced the contraceptive mandate that it was the same as the federal government mandating female deacons in the Southern Baptist Church. When called on it he had the same unhinged response as right-wing Republicans do whenever a woman pushes back on offensive policies that butt into our business.
If Scarborough’s example is the baseline for Republicans, and he’s supposed to be the approachable Republican, it shows you how far they’ve fallen from the true meaning of conservatism, which begins with being conservative when it comes to individual freedoms.
More from the USA/Gallup poll:
In the fifth Swing States survey taken since last fall, Obama leads Republican front-runner Mitt Romney 51%-42% among registered voters just a month after the president had trailed him by two percentage points.
The biggest change came among women under 50. In mid-February, just under half of those voters supported Obama. Now more than six in 10 do while Romney’s support among them has dropped by 14 points, to 30%. The president leads him 2-1 in this group.
For those of you who can’t figure it out on your own, that “women under 50” group is women who still may be in the throes of wanting to conceive.
Of course, many women just hear that Republicans are legislating forced procedures, which we don’t want nor need. That’s enough to make any modern woman run for the voting booth to pull the lever for Democrats.
Republicans announcing forced procedures in state after state make women turn off their message, which clearly contains a strong vein of men telling women what we can or can’t do with our own bodies as a means of controlling us.
It’s the 21st century and women want answers about economics and financial equality, but we’re not likely to take it from a political party who thinks it’s their job to design our life for us, butting in on private decisions that isn’t anyone’s decision but our own.
As the likely leader of the Republican Party through 2012, Mitt Romney would be the one to champion the Republican war on women.
Until he stands apart from Gov. McDonnell and other Republicans who want to take their so-called “pro life” stance and turn it into the power to force unwanted medical procedures on women, Mitt Romney shouldn’t be considered as a choice for the presidency by anyone who respects women should have the right to create our own destiny and wrestle with our own conscience and God about where those decisions lead.
Taylor Marsh is the author of The Hillary Effect, which is available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, where it was 1 of only 4 books in their NOOK Featured Authors Selection launch. Marsh is a veteran political analyst and commentator. She has written for The Hill, U.S. News & World Report, among others, and has been profiled in the Washington Post, The New Republic, and seen on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, CNN, MSNBC, Al Jazeera English and Al Jazeera Arabic, as well as on radio across the dial and on satellite, including the BBC. Marsh lives in the Washington, D.C. area. This column is cross posted from her new media blog.