Surprise: Women Won't Vote For Misogynists

Photo: Rachel Kenison/Getty Images.
Even in politics, what your mom told you in the third grade is still true — once you start insulting people, they stop listening. A new poll found that if a politician is seen as misogynist, women won’t vote for him or her even if they otherwise agree with the candidate’s policies.

The poll, commissioned by American Women in partnership with Elle magazine and shared exclusively with Refinery29, surveyed 1,000 registered voters, primarily unmarried millennial women. What they found was while women cared — deeply — about issues, they were also unwilling to put up with misogynistic abuse from a candidate.

The voters were asked the question, “One candidate for president has called women ‘fat pigs,’ ‘dogs,’ ‘slobs,’ ‘disgusting animals,' and ‘bimbos.’ If you generally supported this candidate’s decisions on policies, how likely would you be to vote for him?” (No points for guessing the candidate.) Across party lines, women consistently said that they would not vote for that candidate; 91% of Democratic women said that they would be unlikely to or would not vote for that candidate, and 73% of Republican women said that candidate had lost their vote.

“The antipathy for these misogynistic comments and behaviors goes beyond partisanship, as overwhelming majorities of women of all partisan identification say that the comments would be a deal-breaker for them,” the report found. Across the board, 86% of women said they would not support a candidate that publicly insulted women.

Even if candidates can refrain from referring to women as “bimbos” guided by their menstrual cycle, that doesn’t mean that women voters will automatically flock to them. The report also found that young and unmarried women were highly influenced by economic policies and stances on reproductive rights. High on the list of concerns was the wage gap (80% of unmarried women said they would support a candidate who promised to address it), affordable higher education (76% of unmarried women), and paid family, medical, and sick leave (72% of unmarried women). When it comes to abortion rights, 59% would be more likely to support a pro-choice candidate.

Either way, it doesn’t paint an encouraging picture for some of the most conservative candidates. But even they know better than to insult some of their most important potential supporters.

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