TV show host and political pundit S.E. Cupp tore apart a flawed view of women and politics with a New York Times essay that was simply titled, “No Not All Women are Democrats.”
The idea should be so simple, that a duh would be the response. But sadly, female leaders on the left from Hillary Clinton to Michelle Obama have spent the past 19 months trying to understand this phenomenon.
Cupp made a number of salient points, but these three points stick out:
Don’t judge me by my looks.
As a college-educated twentysomething woman with cool glasses and an affinity for modern art and Ryan Adams, I had the constant experience of strangers assuming I was a liberal. I grew accustomed to the shock and horror that passed over their faces when I revealed that, yes, I am a Republican.
And nearly every employer has looked at me and asked how I could possibly be a Republican. Loosely translated: “I like you and you are too smart to believe the things you say you do.”
I understand what Cupp means. As a black woman and naturalized citizen, I have been asked I could vote the way I do and even told I was the first of my kind they had ever met. That’s sad for them.
Left-leaning women believe that all women should think and vote the same way – for progressive politics – but women vote based on issues important to them, not just gender.
Yet even though the Democratic Party commands just a slight majority of the female vote, it seems that organizations on the left are still capable of surprise when it comes to the very voters whose loyalty they claim.
In early May, Michelle Obama delivered a speech at the United State of Women Summit in Los Angeles in which she expressed a common belief among Democrats: They are entitled to the women’s vote. “In light of this last election, I’m concerned about us as women and how we think,” she said. “What is going on in our heads where we let that happen?”
If Democrats want to know why women voted for Mr. Trump — or more important, why they didn’t vote for Mrs. Clinton — they should stop presuming that their gender decides what lever they pull.
Finally, female elected officials don’t necessarily represent the interests of women any better than men.:
There’s little evidence that women, by virtue of their gender alone, govern substantially differently than men. Is Joni Ernst, the hog-castrating Republican senator from Iowa who supported missile strikes in Syria, opposed Mr. Trump’s tariffs on China and supported Gina Haspel’s C.I.A. nomination, making discernibly different decisions from her male counterparts? Or for that matter was Nancy Pelosi, the House minority leader, standing up for women any better than a man would have when she defended her colleague, Representative John Conyers, against sexual harassment accusations because he was “an icon”?
We’ve written here, here, here, and on many other occasions about leading feminists who can’t fathom why we all don’t line up in formation (Beyonce reference intended) and vote for the female candidate. It’s because women don’t just vote based on so-called women’s issues.
For those reading the tea leaves about the 2018 midterm elections, I direct them to a weekly generic ballot polling question: Now, thinking about your vote, what would you say is the top set of issues on your mind when you cast your vote for federal offices such as U.S. Senate or Congress?
The top four issues for women in order of importance are economic, national security, healthcare, and seniors. So-called “women’s issues” don’t even crack the top five.
Cupp referenced a well-educated suburban mom whose focus on issues led her to vote for Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton. She explained it well:
“I always find it funny when I hear the term ‘women’s issues’ because that term equates to birth control and abortion,” she said. “As a small-business owner, taxes and the economy are usually my primary concern when making a choice.”
Women across America are speaking, but will the feminist movement listen?