The campaign tactic accusing pro-life advocates and Republicans of supposedly engaging in a “war on women” because they oppose abortions and want to protect unborn children under law was an abysmal failure in the 2014 election.
If there is one main takeaway from last year’s mid-term elections, it’s the fact that the phoney, baloney “war on women” is over. Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and their pro-abortion allies have desperately tried to tag pro-life groups and candidates with the anti-woman tag by claiming the oppose women by virtue of the fact that they oppose abortion and being forced to pay for abortion-causing drugs.
November’s overwhelming victory for pro-life candidates showed the abortion-centered ‘war on women’ strategy has completely failed. Most of the candidates in top-tier races where the war on women tactic was employed won their races.
Abortion darlings Wendy Davis and Sandra Fluke lost their bids for re-election and Davis even lost with women voters. Not only did Davis lose, but she lost by the biggest margin since the 1998 Texas gubernatorial election.
As Allison Howard of Concerned Women for America asked: “If Wendy Davis and Sandra Fluke are the leaders of a so-called war, and they both lose…is the war over?”
And the war on women attacks failed so badly that they were parodied in Colorado, where pro-abortion Senator Mark Udall, who ran half of his campaign ads on the war on women attacking Senator-elect Cory Gardner’s pro-life views. Udall was so obsessed with the war on women claims that he was dubbed in the media “Mark Uterus” and derided even by the liberal Denver Post, which ultimately endorsed Gardner.
Because the message fell on deaf ears of Americans who weren’t buying it, the Obama administration is now looking to bridge the gap by switching from social issues to economic ones in order to attempt to pin an anti-woman message on Republicans.
President Obama and his allies plan to ramp up their focus on the Republican “war on women,” using the campaign-style approach to paint the new GOP majority as out of touch with the voters Democrats badly need to mobilize.
But the White House is tweaking its appeal to women, developing a more economic-centered pitch rather than devoting so much attention to social issues.
“It can’t just be abortion and birth control all the time,” a veteran Democratic pollster with close ties to the White House told the Washington Examiner.
“You have to give people a reason to vote for us, not just against the other side,” the female pollster added. “That’s why I think you’re seeing the White House frame it more in economic terms. I think that message appeals to even more women.”
The “war-on-women” attack proved disastrous for Democrats in November, most notably in a very winnable Senate contest in Colorado in which voters accused the party of pushing a single-issue platform.
Central to the newest effort is a heavy dose of messaging on equal pay, paid leave and greater access to child care, issues that received major play in Obama’s State of the Union address last week.
“It’s time we stop treating child care as a side issue, or as a women’s issue, and treat it like the national economic priority that it is for all of us,” Obama told lawmakers.
Directly challenging Republicans, he later added, “Congress still needs to pass a law that makes sure a woman is paid the same as a man for doing the same work. It’s 2015. It’s time.”
However, Obama is hardly guaranteed to get much traction from the plan. The White House still lacks an effective defense for why female staffers earn less money on average than their male counterparts at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., analysts said.
Women at the White House make 88 cents for every dollar earned by a man, not all that different from the national average Obama so often highlights.
Meanwhile, Cosmopolitan magazine attempted to enter the fray and attack pro-life Republican, but of Cosmo’s 12 endorsed candidates, only two won.
“The election buried once and for all the Democrat Party’s phony ‘war on women,’” said Life Issues Institute Executive Director Brad Mattes.
Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America says the war on women has become offensive.
“We should all be offended that Democrats describe policy differences as a ‘war on women.’ It’s ignorant and insulting when Democrats equate a policy debate to ‘war’ when our sisters overseas are in the midst of a real war – being attacked, sold into slavery, and even killed at the hands of ISIS, Boko Haram, and other terrorists,” she said.
Marjorie Dannenfelser, President of the Susan B. Anthony List, which elected scored of pro-life women and other candidates facing war on women attacks, also says the war on women is dead.
“The bottom has fallen out of the abortion-centered ‘war on women’ strategy. Why is that? Women just don’t agree with the shrinking ranks of the feminist left like EMILY’s List and NARAL that unlimited abortion is the great liberator for women. And they are tired of the politics of division and grievance,” Dannenfelser said.