Our friend Backyard Conservative has a great take on the Dems’ desperate efforts to drum themselves up a constituency. According to columnist Ellen Goodman, that new constituency will be…unmarried women! That’s because married women tend to vote Republican. But the unwed, whether they’re welfare moms or Carrie Bradshaws hell-bent on sex in the city, go for the Dems. Goodman writes:
“The good news for the Democrats was and is that unmarried women are the most progressive block in the demographic neighborhood. The bad news is that they were and are less likely to vote. In 2004, 59 percent of unmarried women voted compared to 71 percent of married women.”
“In the words of Republican pollster and soundbitetress Kellyanne Conway, ‘Women who have what we call the four magic M’s – marriage, munchkins, mortgages and mutual funds – are much more likely to vote.’ And vote Republican.
“Women who are unmarried because of three magic D’s – delay, divorce and death – are more likely to vote Democratic. But less likely to vote at all.”
According to Goodman, the problem is the male-dominated media, which feed hard news about politics to men and Lifetime TV to women, so that women just aren’t informed enough to care about the ballot box. I love the idea that if we only had more women newscasters and talk-show hosts, we would have had more votes for John Kerry, but here goes from Ellen:
“The information gap may be due to women’s overwhelmingly busier lives. Single women especially have less money and more kids than single men. But it may also be due to the media gap. In the gendered media world, men are the target audience of talk radio where the subject is sports and politics, and the style is anger. Women are a prime audience for ‘Oprah’ and reality shows where the subject is relationships and the style is empathy.”
Well, didn’t the liberals try “Air America”? Fortunately, Ellen sees the sunny side: some of those unwed Democratic women will eventually find hubsters and turn into wed Democratic women:
“The marriage gap does not come from sleeping with the enemy or being drafted by Republican husbands. Divorced women are not likely to change politics when they find new partners. Those who marry young and stay married may be more conservative to begin with. These are somewhat different economic and social groups.”
I don’t quite see how Democrats’ getting married to other Democrats is going to translate into a greater total number of votes for Democrats–but as Larry Summers might have said, “Math is hard.”
And as Backyard Conservative points out, isn’t there something pathetic about the Dems’ flailing about to add another victim group–unmarried women–to beef up their dwindling numbers of voters?
“They’ve been uninforming voters for years, and have demogogued issues without offering solutions as part of their standard playbook. Democrats go after the victim in all of us, but succeed with fewer and fewer. Most people want to succeed in life and overcome setbacks with a can-do attitude. This Democrat cult of victimology is especially pernicious for women, who are disproportionately poor, largely as a result of unwed motherhood.”
Yes, and that’s why women who have raised themselves out of poverty–or are working hard to do so–tend to vote GOP.