Uh oh–sisterhood isn't so powerful!

I'm watching with fascination the feminist teapot-tempest over Hillary Clinton's unexpected failure to win wall-to-wall female support for her well-publicized quest to become America's first woman president.

From today's Washington Post:

On the eve of the New Hampshire primary, Hillary Clinton’s quest to become the country’s first female president has encountered an unexpected problem: she is having trouble persuading women, young and old, to rally behind her cause.

The latest sign came Sunday, when a new CNN/WMUR survey here showed Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont beating Clinton among women by eight points — which represents a big shift from the results last week in the Iowa caucuses, where Clinton won women by 11 points.

But the Los Angeles Times had a;ready reported on Feb. 4 that that 11 percent margin in Iowa might not have quite meant what it looked like: Millennial feminists–in contrast to their Boomer and Gen X sisters–didn't seem to be so supportive of Hillary's claim that she deserves to be president because, you know, she's a woman:

Locked in an increasingly tense battle for the Democratic nomination, Clinton has aggressively reached out to young women with the promise of breaking a glass ceiling that the women’s movement has worked for decades to shatter. The newest generation of feminists is responding with a shrug.

The persona cultivated by Clinton’s campaign — that of an exciting, trailblazing big sister with a “Girl Power” playlist of songs at the ready — isn’t sticking. Young female voters seem more likely to see in Clinton an overcautious mother.

In Iowa this week, women 29 and younger voted for Clinton’s challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders, by a stunning margin of roughly 6 to 1, much as young men did, according to the poll of voters arriving at precinct caucuses conducted for the television networks and the Associated Press.

So–two old Democratic women sprang into action over the weekend to get those young Democratic women into line–kind of like the "Aunts" who regulate the social mores of younger women in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale.

Gloria Steinem, age 81, accused the twentysomethings of being boy-crazy (the pro-Sanders "Bernie Bro" is a much-criticized-among-progressives male phenotype):

“Women get more radical as we get older,” she said, explaining that women lose power as they age while men gain it, and feeling oppressed radicalizes you…. “When you’re young, you’re thinking, ‘Where are the boys? The boys are with Bernie?'”

Madeleine Albright, age 78, went a step further, threatening the youthful female feel-the-Berners with eternal damnation:

“Young women have to support Hillary Clinton. The story is not over!” she said. “They’re going to want to push us back. Appointments to the supreme court make all the difference.

“It’s not done and you have to help. Hillary Clinton will always be there for you. And just remember, there’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.”

Uh-oh! Neither admonition went over particularly well. Steinem promptly apologized for her "where the boys are" crack. Hillary went on "Meet the Press" to defend Albright's theological admonition as a “light-hearted but very pointed remark.”

Light-hearted Albright may have been, but the CNN/WMUR poll indicates that all the hectoring to date hasn't pushed into Hillary's camp the huge numbers of women voters she needs to overcome the Clinton Gender Gap (only 32 percent of men supported her in Iowa).

And the CNN/MUR poll shows that older women who aren't named "Steinem" or "Albright" are feeling basically like the millennials about Hillary.

Maybe this essay, quoted in the WaPo article, will make a difference:

“There has never been a president who knows what it’s like to menstruate, be pregnant, or give birth,” wrote Kate Harding, 41, in the online women’s magazine Dame shortly after Clinton declared her candidacy. Nor, Harding said, has their been a president who has faced such blatant sexism “for showing too much cleavage, or having ‘cankles,’ or wearing unflattering headbands.”

That'll do it! Remind female voters that Hillary, too, menstruated!