Nov. 3, 2014

Iowa Democrat Makes Sexist Remarks

Retiring Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) is clearly expecting his empty seat to be taken by Republican Joni Ernst tomorrow. So he decided it was a good idea to point out that she’s not much more than a good-looking female. “In this Senate race, I’ve been watching some of these ads,” Harkin said. “And there’s sort of this sense that, ‘Well, I hear so much about Joni Ernst. She is really attractive, and she sounds nice.’ Well I gotta to thinking about that. I don’t care if she’s as good looking as Taylor Swift or as nice as Mr. Rogers, but if she votes like Michele Bachmann, she’s wrong for the state of Iowa.” Other than noting Ernst served in the U.S. Army and Iowa National Guard for 21 years, including in Iraq and Kuwait for 14 months a decade ago, we’ll let Ernst respond for herself: “I was very offended that Senator Harkin would say that. I think it’s unfortunate that he and many of their party believe that you can’t be a real woman if you’re conservative and you’re female. … I believe if my name would have been John Ernst, attached to my résumé, Senator Harkin would not have said those things.” She absolutely right. And what was that about the Republican war on women?

Update: “I shouldn’t have said those things, I know that,” Harkin said. “I regret anytime someone feels offended by what I have said. … I can assure Senator Ernst that in no way did I intend to offend her.”

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