Health, Labor and women voters

Stephanie Peatling has a fairly lazy article arguing that Tony Abbott has no particular problem with women voters based on a simple bivariate analysis, rather than the multivariate approach that is required to answer this question. In recent decades Labor has for many women ceased to be the party of masculine class aggressiveness and instead become the party of health and education. Labor’s advances among women voters are one aspect of the consolidation of Labor as the party of social liberalism (on the past of social liberalism see Marian Sawer’s interesting The Ethical State). Yet health is not necessarily unchallenged Labor’s terrain, the Coalitions strong performance in 2004 owed much to its success in challenging Labor’s advnatage among voters as the party best to administer health services. How much of Labor’s advantage on health, and thus a key aspect of their appeal to women voters, is being undercut by the current controversy over assisted reproductive technologies. Reductions in medicare funding for IVF procedures have generated substantial concern among many women. Is thisĀ  a sleeper electoral issue, even if the government’s motives seem little different from that of the Coalition in government?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>