The Republican War Against Women
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Their campaigns were lavishly financed by organizations favoring specific economic interests, either through traditional GOP support groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, or fronts funded by wealthy individuals, such as the Koch Brothers and Rupert Murdoch, who are protecting the sectors that feed their wealth.
The strategic aim of this newest version of the backlash strategy is to weaken the Democrat's attraction to its strongest constituency, women voters. This year it had three parts:
1- To energize large numbers of Republican women voters through the campaigns of the radical Republican women candidates.
2- To use this Republican female energy to attract independent women who occasionally voted Republican and want lower taxes and less government.
3- To make Democratic women feel a sense of hopelessness, to encourage a lack of enthusiasm for voting, to alienate them from Obama.
What is surprising is how long it took this male-dominated, backlash political machine to recognize that the path to control of state houses, Congress and the White House was with feisty right-wing women candidates. The machine had funded a few female candidates in the past but never in a serious, systematic way. It never welcomed Phyllis Schlafly, the leader of the Republican anti-feminist movement of the 1970s and '80s, into its inner circle.
It was the success of the women's political movement that brought about this change in strategy. We had succeeded in convincing Americans that women could be governors, senators and president.
Sarah Palin's "Morning in America" Reprise
This new approach became apparent when presidential candidate John McCain selected Palin to be his running mate in 2008. McCain's campaign naively hoped that some of Hillary Clinton's supporters would cross party lines.
Palin's ascendancy was significant politically because it marked the beginning of the new angry women strategy. It also marked the beginning of the effort by the religious right, the radical right and the supply siders to wrest control of the GOP from its more traditional leadership.
Palin writes in Going Rogue, her book published last year, that she, like Ronald Reagan, believes "each person has a destiny, a reason for being." She fashions herself guided by God to follow the example shown to her by Reagan's presidency.
Two days after this year's election, Palin's PAC released a video showing a grizzly bear roaring in silhouette. Over pictures of people cheering, Palin speaks of how well her candidates did in the election. She reprises the Reagan slogan praising "our movement…our morning in America."
A November 5 tally by Politics Daily, reported that 62 Palin-backed candidates won their races, 23 were beaten and, as of that date, seven races were still too close to call.
Two of the highest profile, and most controversial, candidates backed by Palin were among the losers: Sharron Angle and Christine O'Donnell, who ran unsuccessfully for Senate seats, Angle in Nevada and O'Donnell in Delaware.
According to Politics Daily, however, Palin and her allies racked up a 70 percent win rate, and they will move quickly to consolidate their gains, push for some of the Tea Party agenda and, above all, paralyze the Obama White House.
Will Palin run for President? I believe she will.
The Republican War against Woman has not ended. But it's got Palin, Michele Bachmann, re-elected to her Minnesota congressional seat, and now Nikki Haley and Susana Martinez leading it.
On election night, Sharron Angle and Christine O'Donnell did not sound as though they had lost their bid to go to Washington. They sounded like an echo of Palin's video. They are ready to "bring morning to America" and that means reversing the gains women have made over the last three decades.