Rick Santorum: GOP Ladies’ Man

Thu, March 29, 2012

Mom Vote 2012

Conservative women voters LOVE Rick Santorum!

While those of us on the Democratic side of the aisle worry about what will happen to our access to birth control and our reproductive health rights if the former Pennsylvania Senator were to become president, many Republican women favor Santorum over Mitt Romney by huge numbers. But why? Is it because he wears his fatherhood on his sleeve? Is it because of his unwavering anti-abortion positions? Could it be his snazzy sweater vest wardrobe?

Santorum has been winning the women’s vote by huge margins, especially in the South. And according to the New York Times, 73% of Republican women voters they polled favor Santorum because he understands their “needs and problems,” while only 52% say the same for Romney. Why such a big discrepancy? One observer notes at the blog Role/Reboot, that Santorum is doing so well with Republican women because of something he calls the “soft patriarchy:”

“By simultaneously embracing traditional gender roles and a decidedly modern emotional vulnerability, Santorum represents a new ideal of conservative Christian masculinity—one that has noticeable appeal to at least one female demographic.”

So can Romney win those women if Santorum leaves the race, as some politicos predict will happen after the Pennsylvania primary? It’s hard to imagine that women who’ve voted for Santorum would switch their allegiance to President Obama, but if this emotional vulnerability thing is real, Mitt is going to have to work overtime to fill those shoes. It’s clear that he’s trying, as his wife Ann is now on the campaign trail trying to convince Republican women to come over to her husband’s side.

Maybe a sweater vest would help?

Image via iStockPhoto/EdStock2

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