The GOP’s new War on Women backfires, elevates Elizabeth Warren

Posted by | February 9, 2017 09:00 | Filed under: Top Stories

Amanda Marcotte at Salon sums it up nicely: the GOP has launched a new war on women.

Perhaps Sen. Mitch McConnell should have skipped his quadrennial all-day post-inauguration nap. Being awake for the Women’s March and witnessing all the rage and energy of millions of feminists might have woken him up to what kind of bee’s nest awaited him on Tuesday night, when he tried to stop one woman, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, from quoting another woman, Coretta Scott King, during the debate over Sen. Jeff Sessions’ nomination for attorney general.

Warren tried to read a letter that the now-deceased King wrote in 1986, accusing Sessions (correctly) of using “the awesome powers of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters.” McConnell invoked an arcane rule forbidding senators from insulting one another during debate as a pretext to banish Warren, who then read the letter aloud on Facebook Live, leading to millions more watching her than would have been the case if she had simply read the letter on the Senate floor.

“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” McConnell complained during debate, fully embodying the feminist caricature of a fussy man displeased by uppity females, and thereby spawning hundreds of T-shirts and Twitter memes literally overnight. Warren herself took full advantage of the opportunity, hitting social media and cable news hard to highlight what happened.

McConnell’s behavior would have been noteworthy at any time, but the amount of negative attention he’s receiving is compounded by the widespread suspicion within feminist circles that the election of pussy-grabber-in -chief Donald Trump is ushering in a new era of misogyny.

“We’re going be blown backward so far that this irredeemably shitty year may someday look like a lost feminist golden age,” Michelle Goldberg of Slate wrote at the end of 2016. “The massive power of the American state is about to be marshaled to put women in their place.”

McConnell’s tantrum is just the latest incident in a long line of incidents suggesting that conservatives are feeling more empowered to be overt and blunt with their sexism, as Dan Merica of CNN witnessed in December:

And that tantrum backfired badly on McConnell.

Hillary Clinton and other Democrats on Wednesday flocked to support U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren for voicing criticism of President Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general even after being silenced by Republicans on the Senate floor.

McConnell’s quote “nevertheless she persisted,” went viral online among Warren supporters.

While Warren was stopped before she finished reading the letter, others, including rising Democratic star Senator Kamala Harris of California took to the Senate floor on Wednesday to read it.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi reminded reporters that the late Senator Ted Kennedy called Sessions disgraceful in 1986 but he was not rebuked.

“I guess if a man says it you don’t get the words taken from you,” Pelosi said in Baltimore.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said silencing speech is “not what America is about.”

Here’s a hint: never try to shut a woman up when it will give her the spotlight, Senator He-Man Woman-Hater.

Warren, who is viewed as a top-tier 2020 presidential candidate, is usually very selective about her media interviews and generally does not engage with reporters in the Senate hallways. But on Wednesday, she went on a media blitz, which included interviews with CNN, MSNBC, ABC’s “The View” and The Hill.

“The rules are designed so that we can have tough debates about difficult issues without impugning one another’s motives,” said Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). “I promise you, if the Senate becomes a place where people routinely insult one another, Americans aren’t going to be happy.”

The Daily 202, a political blog published by The Washington Post, wrote that McConnell had given Warren’s possible 2020 presidential campaign “an in-kind contribution.”

Was it a Machiavellian move by McConnell to elevate Warren as a potential 2020 presidential candidate? It sounds far-fetched:

“God bless him,” said Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), one of the Senate’s most liberal members. “May he elevate the progressive wing because I think it’s resonating powerfully with Americans.”

Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), another progressive, thinks the explanation for McConnell’s disciplining of Warren is relatively simple.

“Elizabeth Warren gets the Republicans’ blood boiling. She’s hard-hitting and speaks her mind,” he said.

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Copyright 2017 Liberaland
By: dave-dr-gonzo

David Hirsch, a.k.a. Dave "Doctor" Gonzo*, is a renegade record producer, video producer, writer, reformed corporate shill, and still-registered lobbyist for non-one-percenter performing artists and musicians. He lives in a heavily fortified compound in one of Manhattan's less trendy neighborhoods.

* Hirsch is the third person to use the pseudonym, a not-so-veiled tribute to journalist and author Hunter S. Thompson, with the permission of his predecessors Gene Gaudette of American Politics Journal (currently webmaster and chief bottlewasher at Liberaland) and Stephen Meese at Smashmouth Politics.

10 responses to The GOP’s new War on Women backfires, elevates Elizabeth Warren

  1. Buford2k11 February 9th, 2017 at 09:42

    Hehehehe…they can’t even get women hating right…

  2. mea_mark February 9th, 2017 at 09:49

    ” Was it a Machiavellian move by McConnell to elevate Warren as a potential 2020 presidential candidate? It sounds far-fetched: ” — It could be. Perhaps they are hoping that if she gets a little more popular now, the DNC will sabotage her like they did Sanders. They know the DNC wants to back the oligarchy and wall street and Warren is willing to fight them. It divides the democrats and takes advantage of their biggest weakness, sucking up to big business for campaign donations. It would totally backfire for the GOP though if the democrats decide to put the people first and everything else second.

    • Larry Schmitt February 9th, 2017 at 09:56

      Maybe, this time, unlike the republicans, the democrats have learned their lesson? We can dream, can’t we? Unfortunately the biggest donors hedge their bets and give to both sides. That’s certainly true of banks, by way of the ABA.

      • mea_mark February 9th, 2017 at 10:00

        O/T I read this yesterday Why the Left’s Next Best Step Is a Basic Income I think you would like it. I highly recommend it. The left really can have a new winning direction, by taking care of all the people.

        • Larry Schmitt February 9th, 2017 at 10:05

          It’s probably too radical for this country. We can’t get people health coverage, and guaranteed income is waaay to close to that evil socialism (which the ignorant equate with communism) for the Poorly Educated that trump loves so much. I really can’t see it passing without some fundamental change to our way of governing ourselves. The two party system isn’t working. It’s so adversarial now, the cons are laser-focused on undoing everything Obama did. And the dems would be doing the same thing if the positions were reversed.

          • mea_mark February 9th, 2017 at 10:11

            It’s really not that radical. It just seems that way because of the right-wing narrative about pulling your selves up by the bootstraps. It solves many problems and unites the center with the left and takes care of many on the right. Even if can’t get through congress now, it unites the people behind a positive idea. It is far better to be united around a positive idea than around a negative one, like attacking the little donald.

            • Larry Schmitt February 9th, 2017 at 10:25

              It’s radical for the way our country is now. If it makes sense, that’s radical.

    • Bunya February 9th, 2017 at 15:02

      It’s going to be a real struggle to get the money out of politics because, like religion, money is their #1 reason for existing. The will of the people be damned!

  3. William February 9th, 2017 at 11:50

  4. Elliot J. Stamler February 9th, 2017 at 23:25

    I agree with my senator, Chuck Schumer’s comment that silencing speech is not what America is about..but it most definitely IS what the Republican Party is about. All over America, it is always conservative Republicans in the vanguard to diminish or pulverize free speech especially speech dealing with social/cultural/racial/religious viewpoints they abhor. And Mitch McConnell, that southern-fried fascist, has been in the forefront of this from the day he entered the Senate. It is the conservative Republicans, usually the lunatic fringe social conservatives who now have a death grip on the GOP, who demand purges of library shelves, censorship of school curricula, prosecution of sexually-oriented materials that are vended to and depict ONLY consenting adults (even ‘tho nowadays they lose 90% of such cases, prohibition of the right of physicians to counsel their patients on abortion, assisted suicide and other health matters, etc., etc.

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