Via Instapundit, R.S. McCain quotes Phyllis Schlafly making a point about the support unmarried women have shown for Obama:
For example, do you know what was the second-biggest demographic group that voted for Obama? . . . Unmarried women. Seventy percent of unmarried women voted for Obama. And this is because, when you kick your husband out, you’ve got to have Big Brother government to be your provider. . . .
While a generalization, Schlafly’s point is right on the mark. Government welfare programs create circumstances that encourage fatherless households; it is therefore little surprise that the women of these fatherless households tend to vote for the person who will maximize their government benefits.
McCain notes that some on the left have cynically attempted to paint Schlafly’s comments as extreme, and to tar Republicans with their alleged extreme nature by association. But Republicans need not fear this dishonest tactic. As McCain points out, Schlafly’s facts are correct. One should not need to fear speaking the truth.
Perhaps some of the problem comes when people misread Schafly. Some have argued that Schlafly is suggesting that women who divorce their husbands are all (or mostly) greedy women who, in divorcing their children’s fathers, are motivated to do so by a desire to get on the government dole. This is an obvious misunderstanding on several levels. First, many unmarried mothers did not divorce; many never bothered to marry the father to begin with. Second, Schlafly was not discussing the motives for mothers separating from fathers; she was discussing the motives for why mothers, having separated from fathers, might vote for the form of government that best financially substitutes for those fathers. Third, Schlafly never said her statement applied to ALL unmarried mothers, and people need to be able to make arguments without including countless caveats about possible exceptions to their largely correct generalizations — otherwise arguments lose their force.
Here is a generalization for you: when I see violent criminals in court, they tend to be fatherless. When government welfare policies encourage fatherless households, they encourage crime and violence. And when anyone — unmarried women or anyone else — votes for expanding the welfare state, they are voting for a continuation of this depressing and dangerous cycle.
Pointing out that women who raise children without fathers vote their pocketbooks is not irresponsible. It’s simply speaking the truth — and it’s a truth that needs to be told.