We’ve told you about liberal women who are dating or married to otherwise progressive, supportive men, but who find that they (the women) are doing the lion’s share of the work in the Trump resistance movement—the calling, the donating, the marching, the calls to action on social media. A new poll finds that their feeling is accurate: A survey from civic action site DailyAction.org finds that women are making 86 percent of those calls to Congressfolk to log their dissatisfaction with his policies and appointments, The Mary Sue reported.
The site (and others like it) makes protesting stupid easy by texting users an issue to protest and the appropriate senator or representative to contact to do so. DailyAction surveyed its users and elicited some 28,000 responses, finding that 86 percent of their active callers were women. Around half were women over 45, and 28 percent of them were women 30–45.
It’s not news that women are more motivated to protest. In February, The Washington Post reported that some 40 percent of Democratic women intended to increase the activism in the aftermath of a Trump presidency, compared to 27 percent of men. MEL staffer John McDermott looked into why and found that, overall, men may feel less motivated to log the call hours because they feel less threatened by Trump’s anti-woman policies, rely less on government programs than women do, and are overall less engaged in grassroots movements.
The women I interviewed told me when they confronted their male partners about their lack of protest action, many men said calling wouldn’t move the needle politically anyway. But it’s actually not the case. DailyAction takes credit for “the reversal of the GOP’s decision to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics and the decision of Customs and Border protection to release the number of detainees it was holding under Trump’s travel ban.” It also credits record numbers of calls for Trump’s Labor Secretary pick Andrew Puzder withdrawing his nomination.
Reports from The New Yorker and The New York Times have examined exactly what, if anything, all those calls (not emails, not letters) to Congress achieve. “Broadly speaking, these include a huge quantity of people acting in concert, an unusually high pitch of passion, a specific countervailing vision, and consistent press coverage unfavorable to sitting politicians,” Kathryn Shulz at The New Yorker wrote.
“Together, these can create the most potent condition of all: the possibility (or, at any rate, the fear) that the collective restiveness could jeopardize reëlection.”
Meanwhile, the Times said such floods of protest were the best way to spur a legislator to make a statement or at least move an issue to the top of their mind and make it impossible to ignore.
While it usually feels good to be right, this is an instance where there’s not much to gloat over. Instead, many women will still be left asking the men they know and love the same question: What’s your excuse? At least this time, they have data to back it up.