The Washington Post

Land’s clever anti-“war on women” ad didn’t do much to close the gender gap in Michigan

Senate candidate Terri Lynn Land (R-Mich.) takes on Democrat Gary Peters in this ad by Land for Senate. (Terri Land for Senate via YouTube)

Terri Lynn Land, the Republican Senate candidate in Michigan, put out one of the best television spots of the cycle back in April. Called “Really?” the 30-second ad was a clever and funny push back on Democrats‘ efforts to paint Republicans as out of touch with women.

The ad caught the attention of conservative columnist, George Will, who wrote that Land represented the GOP’s best tool in fighting against the “war on women” rhetoric. Land, Michigan’s former secretary of state, is part of cadre of Republican women running for Senate who have Democrats a bit nervous in contests that should be easy pickings.

So how is Land doing so far?  It’s still early, but there are some indicators that give a sense of the shape of this race.

A new NBC/Marist poll shows Land with trailing Rep. Gary Peters, the Democratic Senate nominee, by six points, with some 19 percent of voters still undecided.  Back in April, the gap was about 3 points, with Peters ahead.  Since April, Land hasn’t been able to move the needle beyond about 37 percent of the vote.  And what accounts for this gap?  Gender.  According to the poll, Peters beats Land among women by 13 points, 46 to 33 points.

The good news for Land is that she is outpacing Peters in the fundraising race.  Between April and June she raised nearly $2.2 million to Peters’ $1.96 million.  Add to that total Land’s own net worth, estimated at $32.8 million, making her the richest Senate candidate running this cycle. That’s a lot of money that can be used to buy up a lot of air time as Land looks to try to figure out a way to close the gender gap in a blue state.  History suggests she will have an uphill climb, but with her bank account and name recognition, she stands as good a chance as any candidate in helping the GOP fix its gender gap problem.

UPDATE:  Brook Hougesen, press secretary for the National Republican Senatorial Committee sent She The People this email:

“Former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land held leads over Democratic Congressman Gary Peters in seven out of the thirteen public polls conducted in 2014 (conducted since the race earned Toss Up rating in Cook). This is a tossup race and Gary Peters has been out raised by Terri Lynn Land in each of the last four quarters.”

UPDATE: Tweet from the Peters campaign:

Nia-Malika Henderson is a political reporter for The Fix.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Get Zika news by email

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Show Comments
The New Hampshire primary is Tuesday. Get caught up on the race.
The feminist appeal may not be working for Clinton
In New Hampshire, Sen. Bernie Sanders is beating Clinton among women by eight percentage points, according to a new CNN-WMUR survey. This represents a big shift from the results last week in the Iowa caucuses, where Clinton won women by 11 points.
The Post's Dan Balz says ...
This was supposed to be the strongest Republican presidential field in memory, but cracks are showing. At Saturday night's debate, Marco Rubio withered in the face of unyielding attacks from Chris Christie, drawing attention to the biggest question about his candidacy: Is he ready to be president? How much the debate will affect Rubio's standing Tuesday is anybody's guess. But even if he does well, the question about his readiness to serve as president and to go up against Clinton, if she is the Democratic nominee, will linger.
New Hampshire polling averages
Donald Trump holds a commanding lead in the next state to vote, but Marco Rubio has recently seen a jump in his support, according to polls.
New Hampshire polling averages
A victory in New Hampshire revitalized Hillary Clinton's demoralized campaign in 2008. But this time, she's trailing Bernie Sanders, from neighboring Vermont. She left the state Sunday to go to Flint, Mich., where a cost-saving decision led to poisonous levels of lead in the water of the poor, heavily black, rust-belt city. 
55% 40%
Upcoming debates
Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

Campaign 2016
State of the race
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Close video player
Now Playing

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.