The President and his supporters were quite eager to talk up the supposed Republican “War on Women” last night, and Obama got a nice fat softball setup for it with the “wage-gap” question.
Here’s the thing; that conversation actually hurts the President, not Mitt Romney.
We ran a PocketTrial™ testing the impact that Paycheck “Fairness” Act (PFA) messages had on support for the PFA and support for the President (among independents and weak partisans only) for the Independent Women's Forum (run by my better half).
Most women had no idea what the PFA was, but when they heard both sides a large majority of Democratic women and even a lot of Republican women support it. So the Progressives win the issue.
But we all know that they’re most interested in hurting Republicans with it, not winning the issue itself. So what do they get from the fight politically?
It turns out the debate over the PFA reduces support for President Obama among women who voted for him in 2008 by 12-points, from 87 to 75 percent.
Not only that, but the debate also reduces support for ObamaCare and reduces positive perceptions of Obama’s economic plans.
Finally, we found that the best argument against the PFA is what Romney focused on last night; the economy. Don’t argue about their premises, just argue that the “cure” is far worse for women than the problem and that growing the economy, not more regulation and frivolous lawsuits, is the best way to help women in the workplace.
So, by all means, keep it up!