By Isabelle Walker
With the American Congressional midterms just around the corner (November 4), attention has been drawn to a series of campaign videos that hit the airwaves and TV screens recently. The Republican Party, notoriously unpopular with female voters, has tried to appeal to the apparently hostile demographic.
And, it appears the Grand Old Party has finally tapped into the minds of American females everywhere. Or not.
In what could be a brilliant display of satire but is unfortunately totally genuine, GOP affiliates (namely, the College Republican National Committee and Americans for Shared Prosperity) have released ads akin to dating shows and lonely hearts columns. The ads liken the candidates to potential romantic partners, with the Democratic candidate always represented as overbearing, financially irresponsible and nosy (a la reading emails and text messages without permission). Whereas, the Republican candidate is represented as the values-driven, economically strong and determined suitor with the promise of a bright future. One woman talks about Obama as her boyfriend: “I trusted him”, she says, as if she is revealing the truth about an unfaithful spouse. Another is choosing wedding dresses, with the candidate's name being used in lieu of the designer's name.
The ads are laughable, but unfortunately, represent a much more serious problem in American politics. The GOP is attempting to woo women voters by what can only be described as a patronising attempt to ‘meet them at their level’. There is no attempt to encourage meaningful dialogue about real-life issues - like access to reproductive freedom and equal pay - because, after all, all women want is to find the perfect man.
There is little wonder the Republicans have a consistently bad track record with female voters.
To watch a brilliant take down of the ads by comedian Kristen Schaal of The Daily Show fame, click here.
1. Is Social Media Stifling Political Debate?