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September 9, 2012

The GOP Tells Women to "Break Up" With President Obama

The Republican National Committee has a new ad out called "The Breakup" in which a woman tells someone that their relationship isn't working out. We won't ruin the shocking twist ending for you:

Listen, this just isn't working. It's been four years. You've changed. Your spending is out of control, you're constantly on the golf course, and you're always out with Hollywood celebrities. You think I didn't see you with Sarah Jessica Parker and George Clooney? Your jobs council says you haven't even showed up in six months. You're just not the person I thought you were. It's not me, it's you. I think we should just be friends.

Yes, she's breaking up with a cardboard cutout of President Obama. (And in a nice homage to the end of the Bush administration, she leaves and sticks cardboard Obama with the bill.) Why does this feel to me like those articles in Cosmo where they try to encourage women to watch football by saying that the players are hot and wear tight pants, because everyone knows that women don't really like or understand sports, right? Like the GOP assumes that women aren't reached by regular campaign ads that discuss actual issues, so let's do a girly ad for them where we engage their ladybrains by likening President Obama to a bad boyfriend. And be sure to name drop Sarah Jessica Parker and George Clooney, because they're on the list that the women's outreach consultant gave us of celebrities that all women like.

The star of this ad is, of course, not a disappointed former Obama supporter. It's Bettina Inclan, RNC Director of Hispanic Outreach - and considering that the cardboard Obama out-acted her in this ad I guess it's a good thing she has a day job. It's also pretty hilarious that they would even try the "Hollywood celebrities" line of attack at all - last time I checked it wasn't the DNC and the Obama campaign that turned over the first speaking slot in the prime time 10pm hour before their candidate's acceptance speech to Clint Eastwood so that he could ramble incoherently and argue with an invisible president in an empty chair.

To me, this ad fits right in with the patronizing and pandering tone of the Republican convention and the Romney campaign in general where women voters are concerned - the endless praising of moms in RNC speeches with little or no discussion of equal pay or other issues that matter to women, Paul Ryan referring to the issue of access to birth control as a "distraction", the RNC Woman Up Pavilion that offered hair and makeup touch-ups and pink Romney t-shirts, Ann Romney going from yelling "I love women!" in the middle of her RNC speech to saying the following week that women "need to wake up" and realize that Mitt "will be there for you", and so on.

The end of the ad encourages people to go to BreakUpWithObama.com to share their own reasons for breaking up with President Obama. (And as evidence of how much more on point the Obama campaign's game is, if you accidentally type BreakingUpWithObama.com instead, it redirects to a a page on BarackObama.com.) Instead we think we'll leave a message explaining that we won't be breaking up with Obama, and we also won't have to break up with Mitt Romney or any other Republican...because we don't "date" condescending sexist candidates who don't respect us in the first place.

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