Good piece by Jessica Gavora in WaPo:
…Although polls show that married women favor Romney over Obama, unmarried women are the most reliably Democratic voting group outside African Americans. They constituted a whopping 71-to-29 percent majority for Obama in 2008, earning them a place in what Democrats call their “rising American electorate” — the people of color, the young and the unmarried women who helped deliver the presidency for Obama in 2008, and who Democrats desperately want back in 2012.
The problem is, the rising American electorate is a reliable Democratic vote only when it bothers to register and show up. And even though they show a current 44-point preference for Obama, unmarried women — especially those with children — register and vote at lower rates than married women.
The turnout of unmarried women is so unreliable that, until the 2000 presidential election, Democrats generally wrote off the single female vote as not worth the effort. But in that razor-thin contest, strategists noticed for the first time that 22 million members of their most reliable cohort of voters did not go to the polls. If single women had cast ballots in the same proportions as married women, Al Gore probably would have received the punched chads of an additional 6 million voters, more than enough to have won him the White House…