Women's groups have their eyes on 2014 and 2016, and are aiming to make the so-called "war on women" a rallying cry to elect strong female candidates.
Republicans may not have learned their lesson in 2012. Indeed, the right’s so-called “war on women,” which drove many female voters away from GOP candidates, continues to rage.
“The Republican Party has doubled down on its war against women since the 2012 election,” said Terry O’Neill, president of the National Organization for Women. “You would think that after the 2012 elections they would understand that they have a problem with women. But apparently they don’t get that.”
O’Neill cited the recent abortion bills brought up by Republicans in Texas, Ohio, and North Carolina as examples of the right’s failure to learn the lessons of 2012, when multiple Republican Senate candidates lost winnable races in part because of their harsh rhetoric on abortion.
Of course, not everyone sees it this way.
RNC Co-Chair Sharon Day, who is spearheading a project to recruit Republican women and women candidates, argued that American women aren’t as caught up in issues such as abortion as Democrats claim. Instead, Day said, women voters are focused on the economy, the debt, and education.
“I would say that the NOW organization has a different opinion of how you support women,” Day said. “I wish that NOW wasn’t close-minded about our party.”
Regardless, women’s groups have their eyes on 2014 and 2016, and are aiming to make the so-called “war on women” a rallying cry to elect strong female candidates.
“We see a Republican agenda that is working to roll back the clock on women’s rights and women’s freedoms,” said Marcy Stech, national press secretary for EMILY’S List. “This is absolutely something that will be motivating to women. [Republicans] have not changed their policies; that’s why women are not supporting them and did not support them last time around.”
“Women are not fooled,” O’Neill said. “[Republicans] are not fooling any of us. You said, ‘We’re going to change our message, we’re not going to be the stupid party.’ Guess what, women are not fooled,” O’Neill said. “Our job is to defeat you. I truly believe we’re going to win.”