It’s no secret that Republicans have struggled with women voters for the past few decades. But a certain Republican frontrunner presents a new and enormously greater threat. That candidate is Donald Trump.
As Republicans, I think it is very important to ask Trump to begin repairing his relationship with women voters. We are facing a formidable candidate in 2016, and that opponent happens to be a woman. No matter your opinion of Hillary Clinton, she and her team are ready to paint Trump as sexist. We do not need our frontrunner giving them extra ammo every week with questionable tactics against women.
The numbers aren’t looking pretty. According to an NBC/WSJ poll nearly 47% of Republican women voters cannot see themselves supporting Donald Trump.
Among all women, it’s looking even worse, an average of five liberal and conservative leaning polls show a net favorability for Donald Trump at negative 42 percent.
Democrats are already branding Trump’s history with women as his own “War on Women.” Whether it is his attacks on women for their looks, or his past comments about women, his past is catching up with him.
For many, Trump going after Megyn Kelly, Carly Fiorina and women generally does not irk us because of their gender. Republicans pride ourselves on freedom of speech- and that includes the freedom to say the unpopular thing. What people do not appreciate is Trump’s going after their looks and appearances. Trump had done an interview about Fiorina, saying: “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?” This debacle even made it front and center on the GOP debate stage.
Trump’s fight with Kelly turned for the worse when Trump re-Tweeted a Tweet calling Kelly a “bimbo.” More recently, Trump caused additional backlash when he posted a photo comparing his and Ted Cruz’s wife got negative attention of women voters.
We are a party that is already struggling with women voters. We cannot afford to be silent. This is not a question of whether or not you support Trump in the primaries. If you are serious about winning, this problem needs to be addressed. We have to hold Trump and his campaign accountable and stop dusting this issue under the rug.
In 2012, Mitt Romney lost the election in part because of a big gender gap with women, nearly 11 points according to Gallup. That gap–56 percent for Barack Obama, 44 percent for Romney–helped Obama win his second term by a general population 51 percent to Romney’s 47 percent. With Trump potentially facing a much bigger gap than Romney, it could spell an even bigger loss for the GOP. An average of seven national polls for the general election between Trump versus Hillary Clinton shows Trump with an 11-point loss, according to Real Clear Politics.
The problem will not be solved just by Trump assuring people that he “loves women,” or that he’s the “best with women.” The numbers just don’t support these statements. We have to demand that Trump stop pretending that there’s no problem when it comes to him and female voters. Women make up 54 percent of the electorate, and if we want to win in November, it’s time to start demanding the best out of our potential nominees.
Young Conservative Activist, North Carolina GOP Executive Committee member, Social Media Boss