If “Julia” taught us anything, it’s that the Democrats' agenda — a set of cradle-to-grave policies designed to “protect” women and keep them under the auspices of government control — is doomed to fail come November.

Yesterday’s CBS/New York Times poll that found that women support Romney over Obama 46-44, revealing that playing gender politics actually doesn’t win you women’s — or men’s — votes. The fact is this “gender split” really just mimics the general vote split, suggesting that these ideas are widely unpopular.

As I’ve written before, the “War on Women” narrative is risky business, as women are more and more out-performing men educationally and professionally and even, increasingly, becoming the breadwinners in the family. With so much success, it gets hard to maintain the narrative that women are somehow grossly discriminated against and in need of government support.

Not only do all the policies the White House touts as favorable for women — Head Start, “Race to the Top,” Title IX, government-administered financial aid, ObamaCare and “free coverage,” workplace regulations like Lilly Ledbetter and the Paycheck Fairness Act — fail women and their families, but also they lead to fewer choices, less flexibility and less freedom in all of our lives.

Let’s be clear: Too often, the policies promoted by the left in the name of helping women actually end up hurting women.

Sometimes the condescension coming from the White House is just too much. Apparently women’s success has all been a function of government. Whether you’re the star swimmer on your college team or the new CEO, it’s because Washington carried you there.

What yesterday’s poll numbers reveal is not that Romney has his thumb on the pulse of American women — he certainly still needs help refining his policies and communications. But it suggests that women are tired of being talked (down) to as if they are a victim class in need of constant care.