Barack Obama makes a lot of folks swoon…maybe even a few behind the burka as he lands in Afghanistan today. But it seems like older women are so far resisting his charms. Obama advisors told a Congressional caucus a few weeks ago that disappointed Hillary Clinton supporters should just "get over it." (That didn't go down too well with a few attendees, including California Rep. Diane Watson.) Now, according to a new poll from Pew Research, it seems like Obama is still not successfully wooing older women voters. From Pew:

Whether female voters, who largely favored Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination, will give broad support to Barack Obama this fall remains a key to the outcome of the election. The latest survey from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds that Obama is, in fact, performing quite well among this key voting bloc, largely as the result of his substantial lead among politically independent and younger women. However, a significant numbers of older women, especially those who backed Clinton for the Democratic nomination, are not yet ready to throw their support behind Obama.

In particular, he currently polls considerably worse than his predecessors among all women age 65 or older. About one-third (35%) in this group support Obama, while 42% support McCain. In June 2000, Gore enjoyed a 53%-to-36% lead among women over 65, while in June 2004, Kerry held a more modest 48%-to-43% lead. Currently, nearly one-quarter of women 65 and older (23%) remain undecided about whom to support or say they will vote for another candidate, more than double the share that said that was the case at this point in 2004 (9%) and 2000 (11%).

Even among older women voters who identify themselves as Democrats, significant numbers have yet to declare their support for their party's presumptive nominee
. While Obama has a solid 69%-to-12% advantage over McCain among Democratic women over 50, nearly one-in-five (19%) remain undecided or would vote for another candidate. By comparison, just 4% of older Democratic men are undecided.

Is it that older women are more immune to charm? Or just that it takes lots more than charm for change we can believe in?

–Elaine L.

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  • Sherri July 28, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    I just don’t get it. Why would older women voters who supported Hillary Clinton ever vote for John McCain? McCain represents the exact opposite values that these courageous women struggled for over their life times. Why would they want to set the women’s movement back even further with a continuation of the Republican’s in power?
    Being from a slightly younger generation than the 65+ demographic (I’m 47..the same age as Barack Obama), please do not vote against my interests and my years of striving to get ahead. Your daughters and granddaughters need you to support that candidate who best represents our values. That is Barack Obama.
    Please…think very seriously about this before casting your ballot for John McCain.

  • Mona July 26, 2008 at 10:03 pm

    I am 80 years old and having a hard time believing the polls about older women not supporting Obama. I have an “Older White Woman for Barack Obama” bumper sticker on my van and have filled requests for at least a dozen more. I live in a very small usually Republican leaning village and find it hard to believe our Obama support is very different from other areas.

  • PAT July 21, 2008 at 10:14 am


  • Elaine July 20, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    As always, thanks for your thoughts. Explanation of site content?…Res ipsa Loquitur.

  • naomi dagen bloom July 20, 2008 at 4:06 pm

    Is there some reason unknowable to me that this site continues the drumbeat outlined here with an array of dizzying stats?
    “Fair and balanced” effort on part of WVFC? Many of us over 65 know that our daughters, granddaughters will suffer from a Republican presidency that is economically inept and opposed to every significant healthcare issue–from Choice to Social Security.
    Please explain. Thanks, naomi