In what could become Mitch McConnell’s “47% moment,” a small Kentucky newspaper caught the Senator at stop in Buckner, KY. Speaking at Fastline Publications, McConnell may have thought he was safe from the media. But, in the Internet Age, everything is digital. And everything shows up here eventually.
Leo Weekly, Louisville’s news blog, caught wind of the meeting and some of the quotes attributed to McConnell. Not wanting to take anything out of context, Leo asked The Oldham Era for a copy of the recording, which was provided. The full quote turned out to be even worse than the snippet:
“We’ve come a long way… in pay equity and uh… there are a ton of women CEO’s now running major companies… I could be wrong, but I think most of the barriers have been lowered. And I’m a little skeptical about arguments that – particularly people like my party who are hostile to women – what kind of nonsense is that? I think my opponent is going to make that argument to all of you this fall, that somehow I’m promoting policies that are harmful to women. I don’t think that kind of agenda exploitation for political purposes makes any sense. The last time I ran I got 50 percent of the women votes in the state. So I don’t grant the assumption that we need to sort of give preferential treatment to the majority of our population, which is in my view, leading and performing all across the… you know, maybe I’m missing something here. But I’ve, um, I think the efforts on the part of my opponent, in particular, to try to convince people that women should vote for her because she’s a woman are likely to fail, because I think women voters are going to be looking at the same kind of issues that men are.”
You COULD be wrong? How about you are wrong on several key points, here. We have not “come a long way” in pay equity. In fact, it’s been stagnant for over a decade: women make an average of 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. Though some states have narrowed that gap by a few percentage points, others fall behind it by as much as 13 percent. So, we have come some way on this, but certainly not a long way. Not that he helped in any case, voting against Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and the Paycheck Fairness Act.
McConnell says that he’s “skeptical about arguments” that his party is hostile towards women. Let me clear that up for you, Mitch. Voting to repeal the ACA, a law that prohibits insurance companies from charging women more for premiums and from calling pregnancy a pre-existing condition, doesn’t reflect well on your concern for the ladies. You voted against the Family Medical Leave Act and the Violence Against Women Act, both of which impact women directly. You support the so-called “Hobby Lobby decision,” putting an employer’s wishes over their employee’s medical needs. Your party, Mr. McConnell, is hostile to women. Republicans are against abortion even in cases of rape and incest while also being opposed to birth control. I guess your party just doesn’t understand how women’s plumbing works, eh? You sure like to control it, though.
Lest you think that women are the only part of the population that draws McConnell’s disdain, wait until you get a load of his comments about students. Asked about the huge amount of student loan debt, McConnell agrees that the cost is “outrageous.” If he really believed that, he would have voted to lower the interest rate on those loans. But he didn’t. He doesn’t think that the government ought to be forgiving debt, noting that’s how we ended up with a $16 trillion debt. What he failed to mention is that he supported THAT forgiving of loans. Students, however, need to suck it up:
“A lot of college debt, a significant amount, is related to graduate school. There are a lot of low-cost options that I hope more and more kids will take advantage of. Public schools are cheaper than private schools. There is proprietary education, which works for some people. The cost of higher education is way too high. What I think it would benefit from is a lot of competition, which is one of the reasons that I’m a fan of proprietary education, because it’s providing private competition for traditional colleges and universities, most of which I attended and you probably attended. I think more competition and shopping around for college alternatives is a pretty good idea. This comes from a guy who’s financed three daughters at out-of-state schools. Could have been a lot better here and a lot cheaper here…
…So I think the best short-term solution is for parents to be very cost conscious in shopping around for higher education alternatives. Not everybody needs to go to Yale.”
No plan to help students drowning in debt, not even a break on the interest rate, which is higher than ever. Student loan debt has risen 6% every year between 2008 and 2012. Mitch doesn’t care. You students should just go to cheaper colleges. Or maybe an online college. You know, a for profit
scam school. Because everything is better when it’s privatized.
Maybe this speech will serve as a wake-up call to Kentucky voters. McConnell doesn’t care about women or students. He doesn’t care about jobs — remember when he said that he wasn’t responsible for bringing jobs to Kentucky? With his approval rating before the primary the lowest ever recorded for him, that’s a real possibility. Alison Lundergan Grimes, his Democratic opponent, is breathing down his turtle-y neck, within 1.5 percent. Time for the turtle to go back in his shell.
h/t Politics USA