Should Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton emerge victorious on Tuesday, it will be thanks to female voters, who are poised to perhaps deliver the largest ballot gender gap in U.S. presidential election history.
But that doesn’t mean her campaign is writing off men. In fact, as CBS’s John Dickerson noted in a recent piece, Clinton is making a strategic play to turn out a specific subset of the male vote.
The campaign has been targeting dads, trying to turn GOP nominee Donald Trump’s history of misogyny against him by appealing specifically to fathers of daughters.
This Sunday night, Clinton will put some money behind the effort. The campaign will run two television advertisements during the Sunday Night Football game. One ad features the testimonial of a father, the other that of a grandfather, each of whom is a Republican explaining that Trump’s remarks about women have forced them to vote Democrat this cycle.
Clinton won’t end up winning the male vote. But her campaign’s goal is to soften Trump’s margin here. And they sense a vulnerability for the Republican nominee among those men who not only are politically moderate but have been disturbed by Trump’s remarks at a visceral level. As Dickerson reported:
[Clinton’s camp was] surprised to learn that fathers were reacting strongly to Trump’s comments. To experiment with their finding, they sent out four different family-related messages to voters in target areas. They called it their “divisiveness track,” targeting voters who might be moved by hearing Donald Trump’s words. What they had seen in surveys and focus groups was reaffirmed in the field: fathers were moved away from Trump by the message. The Clinton campaign even saw movement among the voting bloc that Clinton has had the most trouble reaching ― the white non-college-educated voters.
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