Female Voters a Big Factor in Clinton Wins

From New York to Alabama and California to Connecticut, women emerged as the strongest voice on Super Tuesday.

They made up a whopping 57 percent of the vote in all of the primaries, and heavy turnout among female voters gave Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., a significant boost in crucial states.

Women voters made the difference in New Jersey, Tennessee, Massachusetts and California, where the gender gap was as much as 25 points.

A group of women from Los Angeles talked about how gender, age and race influenced them in the voting booth.

Alisha Bleier said Clinton's stand on issues, and not the fact that she's a woman, led her to support the New York senator.

"Not at all for me," said Bleier, who is in her forties. "I think it's slightly insulting. I find that that is more superficial. I want to know what their positions are. I want to know their experience."

She continued, "To me, it's a bonus. ...I mean, I agree with her positions and she's a woman."

Not only a gender gap, but also a generational gap among women came into play on Tuesday.

Laura Chick, who decided to support Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., says she initially felt the tug toward Clinton as so many of her over-50 contemporaries did.

"They've struggled against the glass ceiling all their lives and to them having Hillary Clinton elected president is the culmination of their life struggle," said Chick.

Women under 30, however, didn't seem as compelled to vote for Clinton in order to see the first woman president.

"We are in a different generation and it shouldn't be based solely on the fact that, 'Oh I'm a woman, I need to vote for a woman to get the woman in office," said Katherine Lee, 19, who voted for Obama.

Many women voters said their support of Obama is equally historic.

"In my opinion he is the better candidate but at the same time I am voting for him because he is African-American," Shovanda Williams, 19, said.

"For me the idea of electing a person of color is equally as compelling as electing a woman," Click said.

For many women, the vote came down to a struggle between two extremely appealing candidates.

"I support both of them and I find that they have very similar ideas on many, many things," Lee said. "And if Obama loses, I will be more than happy to support Hillary."

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