Public hearings Monday. The bobbleheads on the news already are comparing the current situation to Anita Hill’s testimony in 1991. But it ain’t 1991 any more. And a big reason Republicans are expected to lose the House in the midterms is that the gender gap is at an all-time high.
This week [August], we got a poll showing that same 24-point gender gap in the only â€œnationalâ€ election of 2018: the national popular vote for the U.S. House. A YouGov survey found that male voters preferred the Republican candidate by 9 percentage points, while female voters preferred the Democratic candidate by 15 points. It was a bit of an outlier, but not egregiously so: A RealClearPolitics-style average1 of generic-ballot polls taken in the past two weeks reveals a gender gap of 16 points, and the two highest-quality polls from that period â€” Quinnipiac and Marist â€” each showed a gap even bigger than 24 points. If YouGov, Quinnipiac or Marist is correct, then just like 2016 broke a gender-gap record for presidential races, 2018 will have the widest gender gap in congressional elections since at least 1993.
1993? or 1992?
In 1992, 24 women were elected as new members to the House and four to the Senate, more than in any previous decade. Many cited anger over Hill’s treatment during the Thomas hearings as a reason for running.
And that was a long, long time ago, and we’ve had that #MeToo thing going on lately. Democrats don’t dare help cover Kavanaugh’s ass the way they made excuses for Clarence Thomas back then. And women are watching.
To sum up our current situation, a president who is on tape bragging about his ability to sexually assault women with impunity, who has been credibly accused of sexual misconduct by a dozen women, who emphatically supported accused abusers such as Roger Ailes and Bill Oâ€™Reilly and Roy Moore, and whoÂ promisedÂ that he would appoint only Supreme Court justices who would vote to overturnÂ Roe v. Wade, has appointed a man who is now accused of an attempted rape. Virtually the entire Republican Party is coming to that manâ€™s defense, a defense that promises to include relentless attacks on the accuser. Just like what every other woman in her position goes through.
AsÂ Bloomberg News reports, the Trump team will try to discredit Fordâ€™s credibility by raising questions about why she didnâ€™t tell anybody at the incident at the time it happened. But every woman in the world knows why that 15-year-old girl didnâ€™t tell anybody about it: because it would turn her trauma into an absolute nightmare.Â Sheâ€™dÂ be the one blamed. Sheâ€™d be disbelieved, sheâ€™d be ostracized, sheâ€™d be called a liar and a slut and a hundred other names. Every woman knows that because every woman has seen it happen.
Orrin Hatch, who obviously didn’t get the sensitivity memo, has already said the allegations are not credible and the accuser is “mixed up.” And, of course, Trump Junior has been his trademark creepy self.
The choice for Republicans is to behave like the troglodyte jerks they are and treat Professor Ford as a nut and a slut.Â Or, they can try to project “sensitivity.” But if they vote to confirm Kavanaugh they won’t be fooling anybody. Paul Waldman continues:
Not all of them are saying that; many Republicans are worried about how this controversy will make them look, and theyâ€™re trying to step carefully. But if theyâ€™re going to insist that Kavanaugh be confirmed, as they will, that means theyâ€™re saying one of three things:
They can say Ford is a liar who concocted this story for political effect, falsified therapistâ€™s notes from 2012 to corroborate her story, pretended to be unwilling to go public until journalists discovered her identity, and has volunteered to withstand the tsunami of hate and death threats guaranteed to come her way on the chance that she could torpedo Kavanaughâ€™s nomination.
Sensitivity is as sensitivity does. See alsoÂ Women Are Being Reminded of What Republicans Think of Them.