The voice of the past in Texas, Republican Gov. Rick Perry, signs an anti-choice bill that will force the closing of many women’s clinics. The voice of the future in Texas, Democratic State Senator Wendy Davis, begins her long march to what may become political greatness. America’s most popular leader, Hillary Clinton, may soon begin her great march to history. And I suggest something here that I rarely suggest: It is time for a poll.
My advice to political parties — as well as to major media in Texas and nationally that are interested in the major trends of the real Texas and the real America — is to begin large-sample polling about the political attitudes of women in 2013.
While I focus on Texas today, this is equally relevant in presidential politics, where the person most likely to be the next president is a woman; in congressional politics, where House Democrats have begun a major initiative supporting issues for women; in Senate politics, where two recent GOP Senate nominees were defeated because of their retrograde views about rape; on the Senate floor, where Democratic and Republican female senators become role model for all senators; and in global affairs, where courageous women along with young people have been at the forefront of championing humanity and democracy.
My thesis about Texas and national politics is that women are so increasingly threatened by a long list of GOP policies and GOP attitudes that they will:
- tend to support Democrats in even larger numbers and
- will turn out to vote for Democrats in even larger numbers on Election Day.
I cannot prove this, though recent Senate campaigns in Indiana and Missouri, as well as the huge popularity of Clinton, offer some data-driven support to this idea.
The poll I would suggest media and polling organizations take in Texas would ask Texas women:
- If Wendy Davis runs for governor are you more likely to support her than Democratic candidates in previous gubernatorial elections, and, are you more likely to turn out to vote than in recent Texas statewide elections?
My guess is that the polling results would support my thesis, but let the data instruct us and let the women speak for themselves in samples that are large, with low margins of error.
Big things are happening in Texas, America and the world. Women are advancing on many fronts, and women are increasingly playing important leadership roles. The issues far transcend abortion. Davis and Clinton have long been champions for teachers, students, seniors, military families, pay equity, job-seekers and consumers, of whom many are women.
When the GOP in Washington wages sadistic and cruel war against food stamps, which my colleague Markos Moulitsas brilliantly scorched in a recent column, they are waging a war that is, in large measure, a war against women.
It is noteworthy that even in Pakistan, where the Taliban attempted to murder a courageous young woman, the Taliban felt a need to “explain,” though this kind of sadistic cruelty can never be successfully explained by those who wage war against the aspirations of women.
[d]cM[/dc]y guess is that this X factor of increased women’s support for Davis and Clinton is significantly underestimated by the political and media establishment in Austin and Washington, which is overly influenced by males, insiders and analysts consumed by short-term news cycles.
On the great matter of when Texas turns blue, some serious and honest polling giving voice to Texas’s female voters would be a useful project for any major media, polling or political organization.
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