Polls indicate that President Trump is losing women voters by huge margins and this may present his reelection campaign with a massive obstacle to overcome as he seeks a second term in office.
What might be most alarming for Trump is that the president is losing support from the white women who were pivotal to his electoral success in 2016.
Exit polls and post-election studies found that Trump outperformed Democrat Hillary Clinton among white women in 2016. This is a statistic that the president cites on the campaign trail to combat the notion that he’s struggling with a widening gender gap in support.
Recent polling indicates that the same white women voters who propelled Trump to victory in 2016 might send him to defeat in 2020.
A Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday found Trump trailing the top five Democratic contenders by between 9 points and 16 points overall. And each candidate was leading the president by 23 points or more among all women.
Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) performed best in hypothetical head-to-head matchups with the president, with each posting an 18 point advantage over Trump among white women.
“Trump has significant issues with suburban women,” said Mark Penn, the co-director of the Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll.
“These voters are the real closet conservatives who voted for Trump and Romney by double digits. The Republicans lost them in the mid-terms and they are Trump’s biggest roadblock to reelection. He’s done nothing so far that has been successful to win them back,” he added, referring to 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
The Trump campaign is looking at this matter seriously, launching a “Women for Trump” campaign headlined by a dynamic group of female surrogates. They hope to build a grassroots army to turn out female voters for the president next November.
The three-dozen key members of the group come from 18 different states. They call themselves “the real squad,” referencing the four Democratic freshman Congresswomen known as “the squad.” The group includes a former governor, a comedian, a pop singer, a former Marine, an “Angel Mom” and an author and motivational speaker.
The “Women for Trump” group is focused on getting out the message that Trump’s policies have benefitted women.
They note that the unemployment rate for women is at historic lows and say that of the five million jobs created during the Trump presidency, 3.2 million have benefitted women.
Trump’s team for women also point to his anti-abortion record; the doubling of the Child Care Tax Credit; Trump’s support for different education options, such as charter schools; a paid family leave proposal for newborns; the president’s insistence on securing the border and a crackdown on drug and human trafficking as evidence that he supports policies that are important to women.
“I think the president is always doing better than the media gives him credit for,” said Penny Nance, who is on the advisory board for “Women for Trump.”
“What I see around the country in doing these get-out-the-vote events with women are packed houses and high enthusiasm. So this idea that women don’t like Trump is just a false narrative. Thirty million women voted for him in the last election and I think the vast majority will do so again. Underestimate him at your own risk.”