November 26, 2012 — Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) on Sunday said that the Republican Party needs to do a better job of appealing to female voters, in part by backing off its push for more abortion restrictions, National Journal reports (Vasilogambros, National Journal, 11/25).
In an appearance on "Fox News Sunday," McCain, who opposes abortion rights, said he is proud of his record, but "as far as young women are concerned, I don't think anybody like me -- I can state my position on abortion, but other than that, leave the issue alone when we are in the kind of economic situation, and frankly, national security situation that we're in" (Mak, "Politico Now," Politico, 11/25).
McCain made the comments in response to a question about how conservatives should respond to Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's large margin of defeat among Latinos, young people and unmarried women (Sappenfield, Christian Science Monitor, 11/25). He also suggested that the GOP rethink its positions on immigration to appeal to Latinos ("Politico Now," Politico, 11/25).
According to the Christian Science Monitor, some Republican strategists also have suggested that the party take a new approach.
"The GOP cannot continue to engage in fire-and-brimstone rhetoric with respect to social issues," Republican strategist Ford O'Connell said. He added, "And while the GOP is primarily a pro-life, traditional-marriage party, it can maintain those positions and win in a national election, but it has to acknowledge that not everyone may agree with those positions" (Christian Science Monitor, 11/25).