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“The focus of the Republican Party on turning back the clock for women really is something that’s unacceptable and shows how callous and insensitive they are towards women’s priorities,” Democratic National Committee chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz explained on CNN over the weekend. If there is a figure who personifies the unwelcome mat the Democratic Party rolls out to men, it is the abrasive Wasserman Schultz. Like Bella Abzug and Pat Schroeder before her, the latest incarnation of Representative Manhater serves as the poster child for why once again men won’t vote Democrat this year.
There is a gender gap in American politics. The headlines—“Gender Gap Daunting for GOP” (Christian Science Monitor), “Republicans Brought the Gender Gap on Themselves” (US News and World Report), “Obama Opens Big Gender Gap in Swing States” (USA Today)—highlight the advantage the president currently enjoys among women voters. But they obscure a decades-long aversion that American men have shown to supporting the president’s party.
Any moron can do the math. There are just two sexes, so if Republicans trail among women yet remain a competitive party then Democrats must trail among men. This isn’t hard to figure out. It is hard to say. People will laugh at you if by “gender gap” you mean to highlight the growing disconnect between Democrats and dudes. Like most truths, this one is better thought than said.
No Democratic presidential candidate has won a majority of male votes in any of the last eight elections. Barack Obama earned a plurality of male ballots over John McCain and Bill Clinton’s 41 percent of men’s votes edged out George H.W. Bush. But exit polls show that most men have cast ballots for someone other than the Democratic nominee in every presidential election since 1980. Democratic presidential candidates all received a lower percentage of votes from men than they did from the electorate as a whole. And in 2010’s mid-term elections, Democrats managed a measly 43 percent of the votes cast by American men in House races.
What caused the malienation?
One possible explanation is that the interest-group pandering practiced by Democrats to attract women has repulsed men.
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