Monday, April 8, 2013

Can Rand win Republican women?

Rand Paul, provoking a gender gap within the GOP

KY Sen. Rand Paul has jumped into the top tier of potential 2016 candidates since his March filibuster, but he's doing it on the back of a growing gender gap.

Though polling is limited, Paul is picking up far more support from Republican men than from Republican women.

In fact, he's the only potential candidate in the Republican field who sports a noticeable GOP gender gap.

In this month's Public Policy Polling survey of national GOP primary voters, Paul win 22% of men (tied for first place) but only 12% of women (fifth place).

The story was the same in last month's Quinnipiac University poll of national GOP primary voters. Paul nabbed 18% of men (2nd place) but only 11% of women.

In limited state polling, we're seeing the same thing. For example, in PPP's poll of Pennsylvania, Paul won, once again, 22% of men, but only 11% of women.

In PPP's survey of Wisconsin, he took 12% of men and only 5% of women.

Now here's the interesting thing.

Prior to March, Rand's numbers with men and women were relatively equal. In fact, in a few surveys, he actually polled better with women than men.

But since March and its famous filibuster, Paul's gender gap has grown dramatically. Yes, he's polling better with both genders, but his jump with men has been much steeper (Interesting aside: are men more into filibusters than women?).

All of this makes theoretical sense.

Paul's dad, Ron, was always more popular with men than women. The tea party has always counted more men than women in its ranks, and economic libertarianism has generally run counter to women's more collective sense of government.

Electorally, this sort of gap has real meaning at both the primary and general election level.

If you remember, one of Mitt Romney's strengths in the 2012 primary was his performance with Republican women. Newt Gingrich struggled with them, Rick Santorum struggled, all the potential anti-Romney's fell flat with Republican women.

Rand doesn't seem primed to do much better. Again, look at the polls below and see how much more balanced his potential foes are.

Of course, at the general election level, things are potentially even more dangerous for Paul.

We all know about the famous gender gap, but as things stand now, Paul would come into a general election as only the fourth or fifth favorite choice among GOP women -- an election where he'd likely be running against the first female presidential nominee in history, Hillary Clinton.

(In chronological order, here are the polls of the 2016 cycle).

1. National Poll of Primary voters -- PPP (April 2013).

Rand gets 22% of men (tied for first) and 12% of women (fifth place).

Rand Paul = 10 percentage points better with men than women.
Jeb Bush = 1 percentage point better with women than men.
Chris Christie = +1% with women.
Bobby Jindal = +1% with men.
Marco Rubio = +1% with men.
Paul Ryan = +3% with women.

2. National Poll of Primary Voters -- Quinnipiac (April 2013).

Rand gets 18% of men (2nd place) and 11% of women (tied for 4th place).

Rand = +7% with men.
Jeb Bush = +3% with women.
Christie = +6% of men.
Rubio = even.
Ryan = +1% with women.

3. Pennsylvania -- PPP (March 2013).

Rand gets 22% of men (first place) and only 12% of women (3rd place).

Rand Paul = +10% with men.
Jeb Bush = +1% with women.
Christie = +1% with men.
Huckabee = +1% with women.
Rubio = +3% with men.
Paul Ryan = 1% with women.

4. Wisconsin -- PPP (February 2013).

Rand gets 12% of men (4th place) and 5% with women (5th place).

Rand = +7% with men.
Jeb Bush = +1% with men.
Chris Christie = +7% with men.
Mike Huckabee = +5% with women.
Marco Rubio = even.
Paul Ryan = +9% with women.

5. Louisiana -- PPP (February 2013).

Rand gets 9% with men (tied for 4th place) and 7% of women (tied for 5th place)

Rand = +2% with men.
Jeb = even.
Christie = +4% with men.
Huckabee = even.
Rubio = +6% with men.
Ryan = even.

6. National Primary Poll -- PPP (February 2013).

Rand gets 10% of men and 10% of women.

Rand = even.
Jeb = +3% with women.
Christie = +2% with men.
Huckabee = +7% with men.
Rubio = +2% with men.
Ryan = +4% with women.

7. Iowa -- PPP (January 2013).

Rand gets 14% of men (tied for 3rd) and 16% of women (tied for 2nd).

Rand = +2% with women.
Jeb = +4% with men.
Christie = +1% with women.
Huckabee = +4% with women.
Rubio = +1% with men.
Ryan = even.

8. Texas -- PPP (January 2013).

Rand gets 14% of women (third place) and 13% of men (third place)

Rand = +1% of women.
Jeb = +2% with women.
Christie = +2% with women.
Huckabee = +1% with women.
Rubio = even.
Ryan = +1% with men.

9. Florida -- PPP (January 2013).

Rand gets 6% of women and 4% of men.

Rand = +2% with women.
Jeb = +9% with women.
Christie = even.
Huckabee +1% with women.
Rubio = +7% with men.
Ryan = +4% with men.

10. National Primary Poll -- PPP (January 2013).

Rand gets 4% of women and 7% of men.

Rand = +3% with men.
Jeb = +4% with women.
Christie = even.
Huckabee = +1% with women.
Rubio = +3% with men.
Ryan = +1% with men.

11. North Carolina -- PPP (December 2012).

Rand gets 4% of women and 9% of men.

Rand = +5% with men.
Jeb = +3% with men.
Christie = even.
Huckabee = +2% with women.
Condi = +8% with women.
Rubio = +3% with men.
Ryan = even.

12. National Primary Poll -- PPP (December 2012).

Rand gets 7% of women and 6% of men.

Rand = +1% with women.
Christie = +6% with men.
Huckabee = +2% with women.
Condi = +6% with women.
Rubio = +5% with men.
Ryan = +5% with women.