Tag Archives: Sexism

The 2012 GOP Nomination: Only One Woman May Apply

by Whitney Pitcher

During an interview this weekend, Governor Romney was asked,” Jon Huntsman is considering a race for the White House. Like you, he is a moderate, Mormon, former Governor who believes in anthropogenic global warming. Is there room in the race for both you?” Of course, that question was never asked. Ron Paul and Gary Johnson aren’t asked if there is room for two libertarian Republicans in the race. Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich are not asked if there is room in the race for two Catholic men who spent time in the House during the 1990s. None of the male candidates are asked if there is room in the race for other candidates who are perceived to be similar.

However, today on FoxNews Sunday, Governor Palin was asked such a question:

Chris Wallace: You would seem to be closest politically of all the candidates to Michele Bachmann, Congresswoman Bachmann. You’re both Tea Party activists. You’re both social conservatives. Is there the room in the race for the two of you, or would you split the same base of voters?

Governor Palin: No, we have differences too. I have many years of executive experience too, and she has her strengths that she will add to the race. There’s certainly room.The more, the merrier. The more competition, the better.

To be sure, Chris Wallace asked several substantive questions on subjects ranging from the debt ceiling to Libya to Medicare reform. However, those strong policy focused issues become diluted when interviewers and journalists bring up such topics. Congresswoman Bachmann herself was questioned similarly, and said that she and Governor Palin were not “interchangeable”.

Journalists, pundits, and political opponents like to cast Governor Palin and Congresswoman Bachmann as political clones and that there is not room for them both. Just as Chris Wallace did to Governor Palin, ABC reporter, Jon Karl, recently framed a question to Congresswoman Bachmann in such a way the two women “occupy the same space”. Michael Reagan suggested yesterday that Congresswoman Bachmann should step in the race and Governor Palin out of the race, and Charles Krauthammer claimed it was Bachmann’s turn, as if there was some kind of gender quota. As Nicole wrote recently, Romney aides desire for both women to get into the race so that Romney can juxtapose himself against the “crazy women”. An aide to one of the male candidates recently stated about Congresswoman Bachmann, ” [s]he basically is Sarah Palin. In terms of her appeal to a specific part of the electorate, the two are about as similar as any two candidates get.”

Governor Palin has consistently stated that she welcomes competition in the race. It is best for the voters to see the character, experience, and policy stances of all who throw their hats into the ring. While Governor Palin and Congresswoman Bachmann indeed are both women who have Tea Party appeal, their political experience differ. Congresswoman Bachmann has experience in the state and national legislatures. Governor Palin has an executive record at the local and state levels. Those with executive experience have to make sole decisions, approve or veto spending, manage staff, appoint officials, etc. In Governor Palin’s case, as governor of Alaska, she held the second most powerful executive state office in the country based upon budgetary and appointment authority, veto power, and other factors. She had the power of line item veto that could only be overridden by a vote of 75% of the legislature, and she could appoint people to offices like the attorney general, which is an elected office in many other states. Additionally, it has been a hundred and thirty years since a Republican was elected President whose highest elected office was in Congress . Whether it be executive political office or executive military experience, the electorate tends to prefer Republicans with executive experience.

There are no doubt some similarities between Governor Palin and Congresswoman Bachmann, as there are similarities amongst all of the candidates. However, to imply that only one of these women should run for President is not only absurd and sexist, it disrespects the electorate’s ability to make a choice for themselves and distinguish among the candidates. Additionally, the Democrats laughably claims the GOP is “anti-women”, yet this election season represents the first time two women from a major party would compete for their party’s presidential nomination. What say you, libs? As Governor Palin has said, “the more, the merrier”. Let these women decide their intentions, and let the voters determine their fates.

H/T Rightmom and Nicole

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George Will Plays Political Genetics and Endocrinology Professor on ABC’s “This Week”

by Whitney Pitcher

Today on ABC’s “This Week”, George Will, as is common for him, chose to provide unsubstantiated and disparaging remarks on Governor Palin’s potential presidential run. When asked if she is going to run for President, Will first replied:

Two things are infinite. One is the expanding universe, and the other is media attention to Sarah Palin, who’s a genius at manipulating it. She has several political problems, the first of which is there’s no undecided vote in this country anymore about Sarah Palin, surely.

Governor Palin manipulates the media attention? Really? To be sure, the media is fixated on every move Governor Palin makes, but to assert that Governor Palin manipulates media coverage is a false. Unlike with other potential candidates, the media has become fixed on the minutiae of Governor Palin’s life and their own created “nontroversies”, not the substance of her policies stances or her record. When Governor Palin made a humanitarian trip to Haiti, the media made the trip about the fact that she had a “hair stylist” (aka Bristol Palin)when she was there.When Governor Palin chose to attend today’s Rolling Thunder rally in Washington D.C. at the request of a retired Rolling Thunder board member, the media asserted that she had not been invited. When she laid out a serious 5 point “Palin Doctrine” about the proper use of military force, the media focused on her reference to President Obama as “our president”, rather than calling using his last name in her reference. Governor Palin does not manipulate the media; the media misrepresents her.

Will also asserts that Governor Palin has “several political problems”, but he only chooses to list one–a rather weak one at that. Will asserts that too many people have already made their mind up about Governor Palin, and there is no changing it. Well, that settles that! Governor Palin and all other candidates and potential candidates can fly home.There’s no need to waste time over the next year to visit states, meet voters, and give speeches! George Will has spoken. No debates are needed for candidates juxtapose their positions and records against one another. People will not change their mind about Tina Fey Governor Palin. That’s just it. That is what campaigns are for to help the undecideds make up their minds and to hopefully change the minds of those in disagreement.

With Governor Palin, so many people have made their decision based upon a media caricature of her. So few know that she cut spending in Alaska by more than 9% and that Alaska has a $12 billiion surplus now due in large part to her policies, but people think that she can see Russia from her house. Correcting the misconceptions, setting the record straight, and controlling the message on one’s own terms is what a political campaign is all about. In Iowa next month and throughout the country in the coming months, a film depicting the truth about Governor Palin’s record and resignation will premiere, providing her with a opportunity to address the caricature, lies, and misrepresentations.

Should she chose to make an official campaign, she will control her own message, something she could not do as part of the McCain campaign, and will be able to juxtapose her record and stances against that of the other candidates. Will conveniently leaves out the fact that Governor Palin is within the margin of error as the front runner for the GOP nomination for President, and more than one in five GOP voters do not have an opinion yet on who should be the nominee for President. That kind of blows a hole in Will’s assertion, does it not?

Will’s most egregious claim comes in his next statement:

Second, the threshold question. It’s not usually asked, but it’s in everyone’s mind in a presidential election. Should we give this person nuclear weapons? And the answer is — answers itself there. That doesn’t mean she can’t be without political consequence.

George Will’s hollow argument becomes that Governor Palin–that capricious, empty headed woman– is simply incapable of handling military power responsibly.  By his assertion, that question is so obvious that it answers itself. As usual, there is nothing to back it up. Why does Will think Governor Palin is incapable? Because her highest office was at the state level as governor? Surely not, as that would render Governors Romney, Pawlenty, Johnson, and Roemer incapable too. It must be noted that in addition to serving as the commander-in-chief of the Alaska National Guard, Governor Palin also served as the official commander of the Alaska State Defense Force (also known as the 49th Readiness Brigade).This is a group of volunteers, often retired military personnel, who supplement the National Guard’s work, which sometimes involves assisting in homeland security and FBI activities. Only 24 states have such defense forces, and Minnesota, New Mexico and Mississippi are among those who do not, meaning someone like Governor Pawlenty has less “experience” than Governor Palin. It also means that someone like Bill Clinton also had less “experience” along those lines than Governor Palin had.

Will’s assertion likely lies in something more along the lines of Governor Palin’s genetic makeup, rather than her political experience. That’s right. People who have a pair of X chromosomes, instead of a X and a Y chromosome can simply not be trusted with such information, in his mind. That extra X chromosome, or estrogen, must give female politicians some uncontrollable urge to press the proverbial red button without consultation or hesitation, according to professor of political genetics and endocrinology, George Will. This has been a common assertion American politics.When Geraldine Ferraro ran for Vice President in 1984, it was asserted that there might be a time when she may have to push the proverbial button to fire missiles, but she might not be able to if she’s just done her nails. Of course, in 2008 as well, sexism was used as a political weapon against both then candidate Hillary Clinton and Governor Palin especially when it came to foreign policy. George Will gives no reasoning as to why he feels that Governor Palin is not to be trusted with the responsibility of the America’s nuclear arsenal. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Governor Palin would make a flippant decision about America’s nuclear arms–whether in deploying them, converting them, or destroying them.Meanwhile, we have a president who signed a treaty with Russia that allows them to move nuclear weapons closer to America’s NATO allies and does not allow America to convert nuclear systems to conventional systems and who seems to not be serious about addressing Iran’s nuclear program. Those are both issues of great concern that Governor Palin has addressed. Governor Palin would not handle America’s nuclear weaponry with carelessness, but she would address the potential of enemies’ nuclear arsenal with seriousness, unlike President Obama.

George Will was, however, magnanimous enough to say that Governor Palin still is of political consequence. How generous! Perhaps she can become a Republican cheerleader when it comes to nuclear and national defense. It would give whole new meaning to the “D-E-F-E-N-S-E” cheer often shouted at sporting events, would it not? However, as Nicole and myself have written, Governor Palin is a point guard, and you do not ask a point guard to become a cheerleader. Governor Palin has often noted that such criticisms and underestimations only give fuel to the fire in her belly. Governor Palin will choose her political path; it will not be chosen for her by the ostrich-like pundocracy. Needless to say, it is the “We the People’s” Will not George Will that will ultimately determine the results of the upcoming primary and general elections.

H/T to multiple C4P contributors

Update: Josh Painter has a good post up on George Will, “the Republagogue”, here.

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MILF–Misogynists (and Elites) I’d Like to Fulminate

by Whitney Pitcher
As the 2012 elections draw near, the Elites and misogynists in the Republican party have doubled down on their direct and indirect attacks on both Governor Palin and grassroots conservatism. In a post at the National Review yesterday, Romesh Pennuru argues that a Romney/Palin match up in the Republican presidential primary would be bad for the party (emphasis mine):

So there is a non-trivial chance that the Republican nomination contest could come down to Palin vs. Romney, and that their conflict could define the primaries. And that’s very bad news for the Republican party. A campaign that pits the two against each other would divide the Republican party along each of its fault lines.

Funny. I thought presidential elections were about what is best for the country, not the Republican party. Silly me. However, he shows the true problem that the Establishment and Elites have with Governor Palin and other conservatives. In the eyes of the elitist Establishment, their greater problem is not with the Left or the Democrats in Washington; it is with people like Governor Palin who have the potential to rid them of their hold on the Republican party.

Pennuru later goes on to describe the class struggle within the party:

Class is another increasingly uncomfortable fault line in the party (as Reihan Salam and I recently described in these pages). Romney’s supporters tend to be college-educated, while Palin draws her support from people who didn’t get college diplomas. In recent elections, upper-middle-class voters have left the Republican party in part because they regard it as dominated by yahoos and know-nothings. But other voters, particularly in the party’s base, resent what they see as a tendency to overestimate the importance of degrees from prestigious colleges.

While recent polling data supports his assertion with regards to education, Pennuru exemplifies how out-of-touch many of the elites/Establishment are. The class issue is not an issue of education level; it’s an issue of entitlement and character. The Establishment feels the “next in line”, such as Mitt Romney, is deserving of the Republican nomination, but if that touted candidate couldn’t win the previous primary election, what makes them automatically entitled to the next nomination? Such an attitude disrespects the American electorate’s ability to choose a nominee for themselves. The character of the elites and Establishment are called into question when they so often choose to remain anonymous in their criticism of Governor Palin, like when unnamed Romney aides said she “isn’t a serious human being” or multiple nameless GOP operatives trashed Governor Palin’s supposed unelectability out of fear that her nomination may destroy their power structure in the GOP.

The most visible example of this is none other than Karl Rove, whose political dictionary seems to define gravitas as possession of a XY chromosome and a resume that includes time in a Bush administration. In a recent interview with New York Magazine, Rove criticized Governor Palin’s travelogue show, and those close to him stated that Rove was frustrated by the fact that the Tea Party was outside of his ability to control. To which Rove discusses:

He says Palin’s people responded to his criticisms by suggesting they’d found a new way to campaign.

“Some of her people have talked to me and said, ‘Look, the old rules don’t apply,’?” says Rove. “In essence, the candidate is the message. We’ll see. That’s an interesting view, and we’ll see how accurate it is.”

By operating without filters in a flattened media environment, Palin and the tea party have argued that power is now bottom-up, divorced from the top-down organizing structures Rove has functioned within for more than 30 years.

The rules of the Establishment no longer apply. It isn’t about the next in line or the preferences of the Elite. That is why Rove’s preferred candidate and the man Pennuru touts as the compromise between Governor Palin and Governor Romney, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, will likely have little traction in a 2012 election. What Rove calls an ” interesting view” is that the message and the messenger do indeed matter. That is why a man like Governor Daniels, who isn’t known for his charisma ,who presided over President Bush’s bloated budgets and would support a Value Added Tax, will not fly with an electorate looking for both the right message and the right messenger.

Perhaps an additional reason that Governor Palin does not win the respect of the Elite and Establishment is that you cannot be praised for your “perfectly creased pants” if you often wear a skirt, right David Brooks? The continued line of attack from the Establishment and Elite men in the GOP have come as a result of Governor Palin’s genetic makeup. As Stacy wrote about yesterday, Daily Caller editor and Fox News contributor, Tucker Carlson, tweeted a sexist reference to Governor Palin as a MILF (mother I’d like to F**k). Sadly, it even took him two tweets to even get an apology right. The irony of this is that Carlson’s site called out Chris Matthews earlier this week for his sexist and derogatory comments. Red State editor and CNN commentator, Erick Erickson joined in the misogyny when he tweeted the following last night:

Maybe my sense of humor needs to be recalibrated, but when I heard @TuckerCarlson’s MILFistan comment, I laughed then got out my passport.

Yes, Erickson’s sense of humor needs to be recalibrated. What is funny about denigrating any woman? What is politically constructive about objectifying the most powerful political voice in America?

Much like Governor Palin’s redefinition of President Obama’s Win the Future acronym, perhaps a redefinition of MILF is needed–Misogynists (and Elitists) I’d Like to Fulminate. What do these lines of attack boil down to? It might very well be best described by one of Governor Palin’s political role models, Margaret Thatcher, who once said, ” I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding, because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have no political argument left”.

Thatcher’s words ring true. The Elites and misogynists do not attack Governor Palin on the issues; they attack her personally–her class and her gender. After all, what’s there to criticize about the one potential candidate who could best provide the solutions on what appears to be a coming energy crisis? What’s there to criticize about a woman who has been prescient on commodity inflation that has resulted because of quantitative easing? The elites and the misogynists cannot criticize Governor Palin on the issues because there’s is little to criticize. Governor Palin has always been open to discussion of the issues, but when the elites and misogynists stoop to the level of chauvinistic pig, even with a tint of elitist lipstick, they are still chauvinistic pigs.

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