Mansplaining And The GOP

I’ve been trying to limit the amount of political commentary snark that I offer on this blog, but this one is just too amusing to pass up.  In attempting to prove why the GOP does not have a war on women thing going on, Mike Huckabee managed to prove that, no really, they do:

Thursday, at the annual meeting of the Republican National Committee in Washington, D.C., once and possibly future presidential candidate Mike Huckabee became the latest Republican to step into the quicksand that women’s issues have become for the GOP. The one-time Arkansas governor and talk show host told a roomful of party officials that Democrats insult women by telling them “they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government.”

Robin Abcarian points out all the reasons why Huckabee is confused about which party is the one saying that. Hint: it’s not the Democrats:

Here’s a remedial lesson for Gov. Huckabee: That is not what Democrats tell women; it’s what Republicans tell them.

Republicans call women “sluts” because women tell Congress they want access to insurance-covered contraception.

Republicans talk about “legitimate rape.”

Republicans say pregnancies as a result of rape are a “gift from God” and should be carried to term.

Republicans say: “One of the things I will talk about that no president has talked about is, I think, the dangers of contraceptives in this country. The whole sexual libertine idea. Many in the Christian faith have said, ‘Contraception’s OK.’ It is not OK.”

Democrats know that invoking women’s sex drives in conversations about healthcare mandates is demeaning, patronizing and wrong.

What Democrats tell women is that women have the right to comprehensive health coverage, which should include access to contraception — even if you work at Hobby Lobby.

What I would really like to know is how exactly Republicans like Huckabee can accuse their opponents of doing exactly what they themselves are doing and not perceive the inherent silliness of doing so.

After all, the opposite of “pro-life” isn’t “pro-abortion.” Do Republicans believe that if the Democrats had their way, abortions would be mandatory? That, at least, would be an example of Democrats believing that the government must tell women what to do with regards to their libidos and reproductive systems.

But since mandatory abortion is only something that exists in the minds of the most deranged Tea Partyers (Partiers?), we can safely ignore this silliness and remember which party actually supports the position that includes the word “choice.”

Cause, you know, giving people choices instead of taking choices away insults them. Somehow.

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3 thoughts on “Mansplaining And The GOP”

  1. You use the word “Tea Party” a lot, but I’m not sure you are using it in the right situations. There’s a schism in the GOP between libertarian-minded fiscal conservatives and authoritarian-minded social conservatives. The Tea Party is a result of that schism.

    Issues of abortion are largely considered a social issue, thus falling to the latter group (often termed the “Religious Right”). The tea-party, on the other hand, is more deeply concerned with fiscal matters and limiting unconstitutional government meddling. Look up the “Contract from America,” which is the closest thing the movement has to a true manifesto.

    Over the years, members of the GOP have attempted to reabsorb the Tea Party members, but have largely not succeeded. After the Tea Party drafted the “Contract from America,” the GOP created the “Pledge to America” as a direct response. Comparing the two documents you can see the notable addition of anti-abortion and a reduced emphasis on ensuring constitutionality in government affairs. Not surprisingly, the Tea Party balked at this. TeaParty [dot] org, likewise, is a partisan GOP attempt to reorient tea party republicans with GOP goals, while TeaPartyPatriots [dot] org is actually representative of the group’s core principles.

    And while I think that you would, in fact, have several points that you disagree with the Tea Party on (for example, they consider welfare systems unconstitutional and would slash government benefits of all types), abortion is not a key part of their principles. “Tea Party” is not short-hand for “Super Conservative.”

    Incidentally, Huckabee is a religious conservative and has been critical of the Tea Party repeatedly in the last few years.

    1. I used the term Tea Party exactly once in this post. I used it as hyperbole because the Tea Party is generally regarded as the icon for obstructionist conservative politics. I did not suggest that Mike Huckabee is part of the Tea Party.

      “The tea-party, on the other hand, is more deeply concerned with fiscal matters and limiting unconstitutional government meddling.”

      This statement is overlooking the fact that the Tea Party, regardless of its stated claims, is fueled in part by bigotry and conservative reaction to the presence of a non-white President. It overlooks the fact that the Tea Party is almost uniformly composed of global warming deniers. Their position on illegal immigration is certainly a social issue, so they can’t be defined as “purely focused on fiscal matters.”

      But that’s moot to my original point; I mentioned the Tea Party was that they’re the punchline of conservatism. I find their ideology to be very silly; thus, I accuse them of believing even more outrageously silly things like mandatory abortion.

      It still doesn’t change the fact that Huckabee said something incredibly stupid and that the Republican Party is blind to the fact that claiming that birth control makes women “helpless” is just as stupid.

  2. Looking back through your archives, you’ve used it less than I thought you had. My mistake. Regardless, I’m not really defending the Tea Party; I just think that if you are going to attack the Republican party, it makes sense to attack the part of the Republican party that’s relevant to the issue at hand. I know it’s meant to be a punchline, but it came across as something of a non-sequitor to me.

    Personally? I’m pro-choice. I have some qualms about third-trimester abortions (without medical cause) and I can hardly understand partial-birth abortion as a concept. However, those abortions account for such a tiny percentage of all abortions that it’s hardly a strike against the concept as a whole. I wholly stand against the idea of the “sacred and immortal soul protected by God,” as an atheist.

    As for immigration, I think it’s important to include the reason when you discuss the Tea Party’s stance against the immigration reform bills in 2013. The Tea Party’s issue with the bill primarily regarded taxation, and the possibility for illegal immigrants to enjoy government benefits without paying taxes on income earned under the table. Their opposition was a fiscal one: “We can’t afford to give benefits to all of these people.” You can paint it as racism if you want, but the movement seems to support reforms to immigration laws that improve the legal path to citizenship. I can’t help but agree that our legal immigration system is in need of repairs, since it takes YEARS to clear for immigration, which is simply too long when you’re looking to provide for your family.

    Personally? I support amnesty, because I see Mexican immigrants as refugees from a corrupt, impoverished, and war-torn state. I also believe that even illegal immigrants bring an economic boon to our country, and our current immigration laws are inhumane. I think that the Tea Party’s calculus on the costs of illegal immigration are flawed.

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