Investor’s Business Daily always seems to hit the nail on the head…
Based on the 1900s-style offerings included in their agenda of identity politics, it’s almost as if Democrats regard women as the dim bulbs of their coalition.
Change with the times they do not. It may be 2008, but Democrats still think that abortion, along with a Big Labor-inspired “Pay Equity Act,” are about all it takes to satisfy female voters.
“Barack Obama has been a consistent champion of reproductive choice; he received 100% ratings from choice groups throughout his career,” one of Obama’s flyers begins.
On the empowerment front, however, it’s another story. Despite the claims to represent women, Democrats still didn’t put Hillary Clinton on the Democratic presidential ticket. Despite a strong performance in the primaries, Clinton wasn’t even considered.
No wonder then that Sarah Palin, the new face on the Republican ticket, resonates so powerfully with women. Palin presents an authentic picture of women’s empowerment, yet owes nothing to the Democrats’ feminist agenda. She was named by John McCain to be his running mate solely on her own merit and political skills as governor of Alaska, all things she earned herself.
That’s what makes the Democratic offerings to women look like such thin gruel. Regardless of how one feels about abortion, abortion rights have been around since 1972 and empower no one. There’s even reason to question why it’s exclusively a women’s issue to Democrats, because they ghettoize it as that.
At the Democratic Convention’s Women’s Caucus, most speeches revolved around abortion and little else. Rep. Louise Slaughter of New York vowed that a President Obama and a Democratic Congress would ensure that doctors who invoke conscience clauses against performing abortions would be forced to perform them.
The intensity of focus on this single issue, alongside a goody bag of other government programs, looked fairly tired to many women. Instead of walking the walk by naming a living, breathing female to the ticket, Democrats sent the message that only government programs, especially the right to abortion, are of interest to women.
Democrats seem to realize how hollow this was — which explains their distracting offerings like movie star Eva Longoria on the podium last week, hardly a model for the average woman. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat of actual power who wrote a book called “Know Your Power,” had better things to do that day.
Meanwhile, Palin is now as close as anyone before to winning real power as a flesh and blood woman. No wonder she resonates among women — as Democrats’ government programs do not.
Palin, a mother of five, didn’t actually have much use for abortion, a right many Democrats think she should have reflexively made use of when she learned her fifth child would be born with Down syndrome. Her beloved son Trig not only brought her joy, but didn’t require her to step down from power. Maybe you can have it all.
That brings up the second problem Palin brings to the Democratic feminist agenda — the canard that a woman cannot succeed in the world with the “drag” of children. The left has been fast to question whether she can be a good mother while in public service.
Although Michelle Obama loudly spoke out against that attitude at the Women’s Caucus last Thursday, the Democratic party line since Palin arrived has been to tell her to go home and take care of kids and leave the careers to the big boys — and childless feminists.
But the fact is Palin was chosen for McCain’s vice presidential spot while Democrats fell down on the job at naming a woman to a real position of power. This exposes the lie behind their agenda.
Palin’s no show-pony. She will bring critical expertise on energy to the Republican ticket. She will be the embodiment of how far a woman can go, not based on a package of rights or a list of government programs, but on her own merit.
McCain gave her the No. 2 spot because of what she adds as a political leader, not as a woman. That just might resonate with women more than anything government can give. That makes her a real revolutionary — and a threat to the outdated feminist agenda.
And the same Democrats who complained about McCain playing identity politics by choosing Palin as his running mate as a ploy to go after women voters are showing their true hypocritical colors:
Senator Barack Obama will increasingly lean on prominent Democratic women to undercut Gov. Sarah Palin and Senator John McCain, dispatching Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton to Florida on Monday and bolstering his plan to deploy female surrogates to battleground states, Obama advisers said Thursday.
Obama aides said they were counting on not only Mrs. Clinton but also Democratic female governors to rebut Ms. Palin — and, by extension, Mr. McCain. Those governors include Janet Napolitano of Arizona and Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas.
They already told women voters what they think of them when they failed to add Hillary Clinton to the ticket. Now they think they’ll win back the women voters by toting a few high-profile female politicians on their campaign’s arm like a high-priced escort at a cocktail party. They don’t trust them with the power, but they come in handy when you need to look good and impress your friends.