Gallup: 2012 election had the largest gender gap in recorded history [View all]
President Obama won women by 12 percentage points, while Mitt Romney won men by 8. That’s a 20-point gender gap, edging out the 1984 election when Ronald Reagan defeated Democrat Walter Mondale in a landslide.
Reagan won both men and women in that election, but carried men by 28 points and women by only 10 – a disparity of 18 points.
2012 was the fifth straight election to feature a double-digit gender gap.
Still, Romney performed better among women than Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) did in 2008. Obama had a 14-point advantage among female voters over his GOP counterpart that year. Romney also outperformed McCain among men in this election – in 2008 Obama and McCain split the male vote.
The politics of gender played a significant role throughout the 2012 election, as Romney looked to cut into Obama’s advantage among female voters by framing the economy as a women’s issue.