Will There Be a Female Voter Backlash?

Dems for McCain.jpg

(Moraga, California)

It’s a prospect that has been simmering for months: Angry, female voters - many of whom supported Hillary Clinton - threatening to stay home or to vote for John McCain. The question with ten days before the election is "Will they materialize in any significant way?"

At certain points throughout the summer, this sentiment was growing. One poll had 27 percent of female Clinton supporters either planning to refuse voting or to cast their ballots for the GOP. Suspense only heightened when Sarah Palin was named to the Republican ticket.

Being out on the campaign trail, I never sensed that the backlash could be as high as 27 percent. But I did think 10 to 15 percent was plausible and enough to swing the election. I kept in touch with groups such as and its leader Diane Montouvalos, whom I met at Hillary Clinton’s Pennsylvania victory rally.

Well now comes another group: Actually, it was formed in June but I just got a new email update from them the other day. Here is part of what it said:

“A group of Hillary’s most ardent supporters formed a coalition called "Just Say No Deal." What followed was a viral explosion which grew organically and virtually. We put our families, jobs, reputations and even, in some cases, our lives and safety on the line to stand up and speak out in the media against the corruption of the DNC and the thuggery of the Obama campaign and ACORN. The abuse inflicted upon Hillary supporters on the blogosphere and on the trail is now being felt by McCain supporters. And, as a female candidate, Sarah Palin is now getting a taste of what ‘Our Gal’ went through.”

Remember, this is not the Republican Party lashing out here. In many respects these are liberal-to-moderate women. Why would they side with Sarah Palin? Well, not for political ideology. But look at the big Palin story this week: The clamor over how much money was spent on her wardrobe, much like the dissection of Hillary Clinton’s pantsuit collection. Honestly, do male candidates face this scrutiny? No, and that’s why you have women shouting about a double standard in the media.

CNN’s Campbell Brown, a former colleague of mine, raised this issue in her columns and show the other day. "My Issue?" Brown said. "There is an incredible double standard here, and we are ignoring a very simple reality: Women are judged based on their appearance far far more than men. That is a statement of fact. There has been plenty written about Sarah Palin's jackets, her hair, her looks.

“Sound Familar?" she asked. "There was plenty of talk and plenty written about Hillary Clinton's looks, hair, pantsuits. Compare that to the attention given to Barack Obama's $1,500 suits or John McCain's $520 Ferragamo shoes. There is no comparison."

Point well taken. It will be interesting to see what many women do on Election Day and how it might affect the outcome! Check in often at

Lose the White House, Save the Senate Strategy

(Danville, California)

I have been saying it for weeks. Some Republicans would give up on John McCain for President and turn their focus toward saving the Senate.

Democrats have a bare majority now, but will pick up at least five Senate seats and possibly more.

If Democrats get to the magic number of sixty, they will have a filibuster-proof majority. In other words, with sixty votes they can cut off debate and force a vote on any issue or nomination.

That could include tax increases, Supreme Court nominations, or treaties. The filibuster is part of the "checks and balances" in our system. It also gives some power to the minority party.

However, with sixty votes, Democrats can pretty much pass whatever they want; and with a Democrat in the White House that would be enormously powerful

So, some Republicans are moving on from the Presidential campaign and trying to save closely contested Senate seats, such as the one Elizabeth Dole currently holds in North Carolina. She should have had an easy reelection, but State Sen. Kay Hagen (D) has been a surprisingly strong challenger. Thus the TV ad I have posted in this blog.

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