But despite the fact that Akin and company are putting their sexism out there more and more each day, I'm sure we've all heard at least one of the following excuses made for him or any of the other offenders who have made news lately:
- But he apologized! (Bonus points if it was actually one of those non-apologies like 'sorry if you were offended, or if you're John McCain accepting Richard Mourdock's "apology" on behalf of women even though he didn't actually apologize.)
- His comments were taken out of context! (Bonus points if the person references the liberal media while making this excuse.)
- He's entitled to his beliefs! (Someone tried this one on us recently, and shockingly they had no comeback when we pointed out that there's a difference between having beliefs and trying to make your beliefs the law and deny people with different beliefs the right to make different choices.)
- He's just a fringe lunatic/extremist/outlier who doesn't reflect the real GOP. Most Republicans don't feel that way!
We're going to include a section with some of the "classics", like Pat Robertson's famous quote about feminism, but we're keeping the rest of the quotes as recent as possible, because the point is that this is today's GOP. This is what the Republican Party believes, promotes, and supports today, in 2012, and this is what they want for the future. Let's get started:
- "The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians." - Pat Robertson, 1992
- He compared the cold, foggy weather spoiling the event to a rape, telling ranch hands, campaign workers and reporters around a campfire, ''If it's inevitable, just relax and enjoy it.'' -Clayton Williams, candidate for governor of Texas, March 1990
- "Feminism was established so as to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream of society." -Rush Limbaugh, 1987 and repeated in 2005
- "Real liberators of American women were not feminist noisemakers; they were the automobile, the supermarket, the shopping center, the dishwasher, the washer-dryer, the freezer, the garbage disposal and frozen food." -Pat Buchanan, 1998
- "The life expectancy of men is drawing closer to that of women. Women still live longer than men because their lives are easier." -Rush Limbaugh, March 2005
- "Liberal women have feminized politics to such a degree that male politicians can't even be men, which may explain why politicians as a group are often caught in these sex scandals. Everybody says, 'What is it about politicians?' Anybody ever think it might be liberal women? ...Women have neutered the business of politics so effectively that the men who are involved in politics constantly have to prove their masculinity to themselves and to others." -Rush Limbaugh, June 2011
- What does it say about the college co-ed Susan Fluke [sic], who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex, what does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She's having so much sex she can't afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We're the pimps. (interruption) The johns? We would be the johns? No! We're not the johns. (interruption) Yeah, that's right. Pimp's not the right word. Okay, so she's not a slut. She's "round heeled". I take it back. ...Can you imagine if you're her parents how proud of Sandra Fluke you would be? Your daughter goes up to a congressional hearing conducted by the Botox-filled Nancy Pelosi and testifies she's having so much sex she can't afford her own birth control pills and she agrees that Obama should provide them, or the Pope. ...So, Ms. Fluke and the rest of you feminazis, here's the deal. If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it, and I'll tell you what it is. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch. -Rush Limbaugh, February 2012
- We could quote Rush Limbaugh all day, but we have to cut if off somewhere or this post will never end. But before we stop, we want to point out the language that Rush uses to describe women every day. Not only is he very proud to have invented the term "feminazi", but he has also called various women anchorette, infobabe, Senatorette, Chairbabe Debbie Blabbermouth Schultz, referred to Nancy Pelosi as a witch, calls the National Organization for Women the National Assocation of Gals (or NAGs for short), and so on. And 99% of the GOP worships at Rush's altar and never calls him out on anything that he says.
- "Just again, the example of the eloquence of Sen. Obama. He's [for] health for the mother. You know, that's been stretched by the pro-abortion movement in America to mean almost anything. That's the extreme pro-abortion position, quote, 'health.'" -Senator John McCain, October 2008
We need a visual aid to convey the mocking scare quote that McCain used in that last statement, which was made during a presidential debate:
- “It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.” Todd Akin, Missouri congressman and candidate for Senate, August 2012
- “Oh, life of the mother – exception of life of the mother, rape and incest. Yeah, I’ve always — that’s a mantra, you know, I’ve said it so often it just spills out. If you really – there are very few pregnancies as a result of rape, fortunately, and incest — compared to the usual abortion, what is the percentage of abortions for rape? It is tiny. It is a tiny, tiny percentage. …. [I]n terms of the percentage of pregnancies, percentage of abortions for rape as compared to overall abortions, it’s a tiny, tiny percentage. [...] Most abortions, most abortions are for what purpose? They just don’t want to have a baby! The second reason for abortion is you’d like a boy and it’s a girl, or vice versa. And I know a lot of people are opposed to abortion who are pro-choice.” -Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, September 2012
- Q: What do you say then to a young girl, I am
going to place it as he said it, when a young girl is raped by her
father, let's say, and she is pregnant. How do you explain this to her
in terms of wanting her to go through the process of having the baby?
A: I think that two wrongs don't make a right. And I have been in the situation of counseling young girls, not 13 but 15, who have had very at risk, difficult pregnancies. And my counsel was to look for some alternatives, which they did. And they found that they had made what was really a lemon situation into lemonade. -Sharron Angle, candidate for Senate from Nevada, June 2010
- Q: You have two daughters. You have many granddaughters. If one
of them was raped -- and I accept it's a very unlikely thing to happen
-- but if they were, would you honestly look at them in the eye and say
they had to have that child if they were impregnated?
A: No. If it's an honest rape, that individual should go immediately to the emergency room. I would give them a shot of estrogen. -Presidential candidate Ron Paul, February 2012
Q: So a rape victim, in a hospital. And it’s a hospital that is run by a Catholic institution. Emergency contraception, should that be—should she be sent to another hospital in the middle of the night when she’s in dire distress?
A: I don’t think that the government should overreach. I mean it’s a separation of church and state in my view, and I think that a religious institution has the right to decide what its policies would be in that, in that case.
Q: Yeah and I respect that, I just wonder if that institution, gets a certain, a majority of it’s money from the government, if it’s mostly federally funded, does that play a role in your thinking?
A: Well I just think again, that it is an issue of separation of church and state, and that institution should decide what its role would be, and what it’s comfortable with doing in that instance. -Linda McMahon, Senate candidate from Connecticut, October 2012
- “This bill does not require a trans-vaginal exam. … It leaves that up to the patient and the physician to make that determination. Rape and incest was used as a reason to oppose this. I would hope that when a woman goes in to a physician with a rape issue, that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage or was it truly caused by a rape. I assume that's part of the counseling that goes on.” -Idaho Senator Chuck Winder, March 2012
- Q: Do you really believe, in every case, it should be totally wrong, in the
sense that -- I know that you believe, even in cases of rape and incest -- and you've got two daughters. You know, if you have a daughter that came to you who had been raped. And was pregnant and was begging you to let her have an abortion, would you really be able to look her in the eye and say, no, as her father? ...And they are looking at their daughter ,saying, how can I deal with this, because if I make her have this baby, isn't it going to just ruin her life?
A: Well, you can make the argument that if she doesn't have this baby, if she kills her child, that that, too, could ruin her life. And this is not an easy choice. I understand that. As horrible as the way that that son or daughter and son was created, it still is her child. And whether she has that child or doesn't, it will always be her child. And she will always know that. And so to embrace her and to love her and to support her and get her through this very difficult time, I've always, you know, I believe and I think the right approach is to accept this horribly created -- in the sense of rape -- but nevertheless a gift in a very broken way, the gift of human life, and accept what God has given to you. As you know, we have to, in lots of different aspects of our life. We have horrible things happen. I can't think of anything more horrible. But, nevertheless, we have to make the best out of a bad situation. -Former senator and presidential candidate Rick Santorum, January 2012
- Q: Specifically where you stand when it comes to rape, and when it comes to the issue of should it be legal for a woman to be able to get an abortion if she’s raped?
A: I’m very proud of my pro-life record, and I’ve always adopted the idea that, the position that the method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life. -Congressman and VP candidate Paul Ryan, August 2012
- "He also told me one thing, 'If you do (have premarital sex), just remember, consensual sex can turn into rape in an awful hurry.' Because all of a sudden a young lady gets pregnant and the parents are madder than a wet hen and she's not going to say, 'Oh, yeah, I was part of the program.' All that she has to say or the parents have to say is it was rape because she's underage. And he just said, 'Remember, Roger, if you go down that road, some girls,' he said, 'they rape so easy.'" -Wisconsin State Rep. Roger Rivard, December 2011
- King supports the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act." It would ban Federal funding of abortions except in cases of forcible rape. Right now, Medicaid also covers abortions for victims of statutory rape or incest - for example, a 12 year old who gets pregnant. Congressman King says he's not aware of any young victims like that.
"Well I just haven't heard of that being a circumstance that's been brought to me in any personal way, and I'd be open to discussion about that subject matter," he said. -Rep. Steve King, August 2012
- "Incest is so rare, I mean, it’s so rare. But the rape thing…you know, I know a woman who was raped and kept her child, gave it up for adoption, she doesn’t regret it. In fact, she’s a big pro-life proponent. But on the rape thing, it’s like, how does putting more violence onto a woman’s body and taking the life of an innocent child that’s the consequence of this crime, how does that make it better? You know what I mean?" -Congressional candidate John Koster, October 2012
- Q: How would you tell a daughter or a granddaughter who, God forbid, would be the victim of a rape, to keep the child against her own will? Do you have a way to explain that?
A: I lived something similar to that with my own family. She chose life, and I commend her for that. She knew my views. But, fortunately for me, I didn’t have to.. she chose they way I thought. No don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t rape.
Q: Similar how?
A: Uh, having a baby out of wedlock.
A: That’s similar to rape?
A: No, no, no, but… put yourself in a father’s situation, yes. It is similar. But, back to the original, I’m pro-life, period. -Tom Smith, Senate candidate from Pennsylvania, August 2012
- I believe life begins at conception. The only exception I have for to have an abortion is in the case of the life of the mother. I struggled with myself for a long time but I came to realize life is that gift from God, even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape. It is something that God intended to happen. -Richard Mourdock, Senate candidate from Indiana, October 2012
- Ohio Senate candidate Josh Mandel: "I’ve gotten to know Richard because we’re both state treasurers. We’re treasurers in states next to each other. He’s a gentleman. He’s a class act. He’s a thoughtful guy."
- Senator and NRSC chair John Cornyn: "Richard and I, along with millions of Americans — including even Joe Donnelly — believe that life is a gift from God. To try and construe his words as anything other than a restatement of that belief is irresponsible and ridiculous."
- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell: "It’s incredibly irresponsible for anyone to take what Richard said about his views on life to demean his opposition to the detestable act of rape. We’re at the end of an election season here and I understand each side is looking to make hay out of every comment, but sharing the view of millions of Americans that life begins at conception is Richard’s deeply held personal belief that shouldn’t be misconstrued by partisans to imply something it does not."
- Newt Gingrich: "If you listen to what Mourdock actually said, he said what virtually every Catholic and every fundamentalist in the country believes, life begins at conception...[Mourdock] also immediately issued a clarification saying he was referring to the act of conception, and he condemned rape. Romney has condemned — I mean, one part of this is nonsense. Every candidate I know, every decent American I know condemns rape. OK, so why can’t people like [Obama deputy campaign manager] Stephanie Cutter get over it? We all condemn rape. Now let’s talk about whether we also condemn killing babies in the eighth and ninth month."
Women's Health & Reproductive Rights
- With modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance…There’s no such exception as life of the mother. And as far as health of the mother, same thing, with advances in science and technology, health of the mother has become a tool for abortions anytime under any reason. -Rep. Joe Walsh of Illinois, October 2012
- "This contraceptive thing, my gosh it’s such inexpensive, back in my days we used Bayer aspirin for contraception, the gals put it between their knees and it wasn’t that costly." -Rick Santorum campaign donor Foster Friess, February 2012
- “In the vast majority of these cases, [abortions] are matters of lifestyle convenience." -Virginia Deputy House Majority Leader C. Todd Gilbert, February 2012
- "Mr. Speaker. I just have to take issue with the comments that have been preceding this debate. This is not a political issue. This is a human issue. Let me just say this to all of my colleagues who are about to vote on this issue. On the motion to recommit. The health exception is a loophole wide enough to drive a Mack truck through it. The health exception would render this ban virtually meaningless." -Paul Ryan, April 2000
- Q: I know Rick Santorum in his speech was talking a lot about this. He even went so far as to say, “I don’t think insurance plans should be covering birth control in the first place.” Do you think he’s right about that?
A: I do, I do. I don’t think that’s the role of government. We have to start rolling back government. There are many issues out there beyond Obamacare, but really the issue overlying everything is, is this nation going to survive? And that ultimately becomes an issue of economics. -Richard Mourdock, October 2012
- While campaigning for governor in April, he told the Wisconsin Right to Life convention that during his time as a state legislator, he was proud of "trying to defund Planned Parenthood and make sure they didn't have any money, not just for abortion, but any money for anything." -Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, April 2011
- Q: What do you think makes a woman want to have an abortion?
A: Well, there’s probably a lot of — I’m not a woman so I’m thinking, if I’m a woman, why would I want to get — some of it has to do with economics. A lot has to do with economics. I don’t know, I have never — It’s a question I have never thought about. -Ohio state Rep. Jim Buchy, September 2012
- Frank Szabo said that as sheriff, he would arrest any doctor performing elective or late-term abortions in his jurisdiction. "There is a difference between legal and lawful," Szabo said.
Szabo explained the difference by referring to the issue of slavery, which he said used to be legal but was never lawful under the Constitution. He said that even though elective abortions are legal in New Hampshire, with some restrictions, he doesn't consider them lawful. But Szabo may have inflamed the issue further when asked if he would use deadly force to prevent an abortion.
"I would respond specifically by saying that if someone is under threat, a full-grown human being, if they're under threat, what should the sheriff do? Everything in their power to prevent them from being harmed," he said.
When pressed about what he would do if he learned that a doctor was about to perform an elective abortion, Szabo replied he would do what it took to prevent that from happening.
"Absolutely," he said. "Well, I would hope that it wouldn't come to that, as with any situation where someone is in danger, but again, specifically talking about elective abortions and late-term abortions, that is an act that needs to be stopped." -Frank Szabo, candidate for sheriff in Hillsborough County, NH, August 2012
- "Of course I support the Blunt Amendment." -Mitt Romney, March 2012
- “Today marks the 39th anniversary of one of the darkest moments in Supreme Court history, when the court in Roe v. Wade claimed authority over the fundamental question regarding the rights of the unborn. The result is millions of lives since that day have been tragically silenced. Since that day, the pro-life movement has been working tirelessly in an effort to change hearts and minds and protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us. Today, we recommit ourselves to reversing that decision, for in the quiet of conscience, people of both political parties know that more than a million abortions a year cannot be squared with the good heart of America.” -Mitt Romney, January 2012
- "I am pro-life and believe that abortion should be limited to only instances of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother. I support the reversal of Roe v. Wade, because it is bad law and bad medicine. Roe was a misguided ruling that was a result of a small group of activist federal judges legislating from the bench." -Mitt Romney, June 2011
- "Absolutely." -Mitt Romney, when asked by Mike Huckabee whether he would support a "life begins at conception" or "personhood" constitutional amendment, October 2011
- "Many issues are at stake, but some issues are not negotiable: The right to life from conception to natural death. Marriage should be reinforced, not redefined. It is an egregious violation of our cherished principle of religious liberty for the government to force the Church to buy the kind of insurance that leads to the taking of innocent human
Your vote will affect the future and be recorded in eternity. Will you vote the values that will stand the test of fire? This is Mike Huckabee asking you to join me November 6th and vote based on values that will stand the test of fire." -Mike Huckabee, November 2012
- Q: You voted against the Lilly Ledbetter
Fair Pay Act. Why do you think it is okay for a woman to be paid less
for doing the same work as a man?
A: Well, first of all, the premise of your question is that I’m making that particular distinction. I believe in free enterprise. I don’t think the government should be telling people what you pay and what you don’t pay. I think it’s about freedom. If someone what’s to hire somebody and they agree on a salary, that’s fine, however it wants to work. So, the government sticking its nose into all kinds of things has gotten us into huge trouble. -Todd Akin, September 2012
- What about something like a pay equity law, that men and women should
be paid equal pay for equal work. Is that something that you think
would be appropriate for the role of state government here in New
I certainly think women should be paid the same as men. Young workers should be paid the same as older workers if they achieve the criteria for salary. But I don’t know that it’s appropriate for the government to continue to micromanage the workplace. -Ovide Lamontagne, candidate for governor of New Hampshire, October 2012
- But just because they call a piece of legislation an equal pay bill doesn’t make it so. In fact, much of this legislation is in many respects nothing but an effort to help trial lawyers collect their fees and file lawsuits, which may have nothing to do whatsoever to increasing pay equity in the workplace. -Senator Marco Rubio, October 2012
- "Lilly Ledbetter was not an equal pay law. It was about opening up the lawsuits and statute of limitations. It wasn't an equal pay law, and of course, we support equal pay." -Paul Ryan, October 2012
- "We don’t think America suffers from a lack of litigation." -Sen. Mitch McConnell, explaining why Senate Republicans blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act, June 2012
- "Will, you know, will repealing [the Lilly Ledbetter Act] be a priority? If you came back and said, you know, that's really the thing that's hurting my business the most. My guess is there are other things that we can do that have a higher priority in terms of what I, what I believe might need to be done. I think you know we need to create -- that thing is a nuisance. It shouldn't be the law." -Pete Hoekstra, former Congressman and current Senate candidate from Michigan, April 2012
War on Women? What War on Women?
- “Now it’s a war on women; tomorrow it’s going to be a war on left-handed Irishmen or something like that.” -Paul Ryan, October 2012
- "You know, liberals, ladies and gentlemen, are still in a state of shock and disbelief over the notion that "social issues" don't hurt Republicans. You see the reason for the manufactured, false, it-doesn't-really-exist attempt to convince people Republicans have a war on women... Which, again, as mayor of Realville: Republicans date women, they marry women, they have children with women. They take women to dinner. They buy women diamonds and open car doors for women." -Rush Limbaugh, March 2012
- "If the Democrats said we had a war on caterpillars and every mainstream media outlet talked about the fact that Republicans have a war on caterpillars, then we’d have problems with caterpillars. It’s a fiction." -Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, April 2012
- "...the Democrats have been trying to create, manufacture this war on women...And the fact of the matter is that they've taken it too far. And that it's being exposed that there is no war on women. What's happening is that there's a distraction that the Democrats are trying to distract the American people from the real issues. -Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, April 2012
- "I’m fed up with it. I’m really, really sort of at the end of my rope in terms of the Democratic Party claiming we have a ‘war on women.’ The Democratic Party seems to believe the only things women care about is government-funded contraceptives and government handouts from cradle to grave." -Liz Cheney, August 2012
- “I think we have a very clear path to victory, and apparently Claire McCaskill thinks we do, too, because she was very aggressive at the debate, which was quite different than it was when she ran against Jim Talent. She had a confidence and was much more ladylike (in 2006), but in the debate on Friday she came out swinging, and I think that’s because she feels threatened.” -OMG it's Todd Akin again! (September 2012)
- "The only hitch in an otherwise perfect week was the awful noise coming from the hotel room next door to mine. Turns out it was just Debbie Wasserman Schultz, practicing her speech for the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte next week. Bless her heart." -Mike Huckabee, August 2012
- "We need you to come in and lock shields and strengthen up the men that will go into the fight for you. To let these other women know, on the other side, these Planned Parenthood women, the Code Pink women, and all of these women who have been neutering American men and bringing us to the point of this incredible weakness, to let them know that we are not going to have our men become subservient." -Rep. Allen West, April 2011
- "I was marching in a parade in Schaumburg, Sunday, two days before the Democratic convention, when Tammy Duckworth was on a stage down in Charlotte -- if you can look at the picture -- picking out a dress for her speech Tuesday night."
"...at this point the only debate Ms. Duckworth is actually interested in having is which outfit she’ll be wearing for her big speech." -Rep. Joe Walsh, October 2012
- "My wife likes to shop." -Former Wisonsin governor and current Senate candidate Tommy Thompson, explaining why he chose to become a lobbyist after leaving the Bush administration
- "We’ve got real issues to talk about not the latest bimbo eruption." -Former governor and presidential candidate Jon Huntsman, addressing sexual harassment allegations against fellow candidate Herman Cain, November 2011
- "She goes to Washington, D.C., it’s a little bit like one of those dogs, ‘fetch’. She goes to Washington, D.C., and gets all of these taxes and red tape and bureaucracy and executive orders and agencies, and brings all of this stuff and dumps it on us in Missouri." -Todd Fucking Akin, October 2012
This is far from a comprehensive list, and that's kinda the point. Republicans are literally saying stuff like this every single day. It's impossible to keep up. And they're not just talking, but also constantly pushing a legislative agenda designed to force these sexist views on all of us. The Republican Party has proven more than ever in the past year that they don't understand how our bodies work, they don't care about the discrimination and challenges that we face in the workplace, and they don't respect us enough to let us make our own choices about our health and our lives. So they don't deserve our support, or our silence in the face of their sexism. That's why we're never going to shut up about it, no matter what they call us.