Jim Matheson’s war on women

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Or more precisely, his war on one womanMayor Mia Love. As Matheson has geared up his attacks on Mayor Love in an attempt to cling to power, he has gotten increasingly negative and condescending. Even my friends on the left (and yes, I do have them), have noted his arrogant, condescending attitude. He is derisive in tone and dismissive in his words.

What really stands out to me, though, is the language he uses to describe Mia Love. “Inexperienced,” “Hasn’t done her homework,” “Not ready.” In fact, in Matheson’s latest ad, he says she is “Not Good” and “Not Ready”. Then there’s this zinger from Saturday’s debate: “Being in Congress is a tough job. The issues are tough, and you’ve got to work really hard to understand them. They’re not that simple.”

Whoa.

Matheson is calling into question Mia’s intelligence? Her ability to understand the issues that face this nation? Her experience? Puh-lease.

Mia Love is plenty bright. She has a college degree from the University of Hartford, she’s been knee-deep in budgets for years and she clearly knows and can articulate the dangerous fiscal path we’re on as a nation – as well as steps we need to take to prevent a full-scale meltdown. The insinuation statement that she can’t handle the rigors of the job in Congress is crap. And more than that, it’s offensive.

Matheson also claims that Mia does not have enough “experience” to serve in Congress. Really? By what standard? Holding elected office? Let’s look at that.

His first opponent, Derek Smith, had zero experience in elected office.

His next opponent, x2, was John Swallow. When Swallow ran against him in 2002 and in 2004, he had held elected office for 6 years.

His 3rd opponent, in 2006, was LaVar Christensen, who had been in office less than 4 years.

His 4th opponent, Bill Dew, had never held elected office.

His 5th opponent, Morgan Philpot, held elected office for less than 4 years before challenging Matheson.

In contrast, Mia Love has held elected office since 2003. That’s 9 years. More than double Philpot and Christensen, and 50% longer than John Swallow. She has led through difficult times, not just the boom years and she has spent nearly a decade in the trenches of municipal government, the closest you can get to “we the people.” (And by the way – experience in elected office is NOT a prerequisite for running for federal office – or for winning. Exhibit A: Congressman Jason Chaffetz. Exhibit B: Senator Mike Lee.) It’s bunk to claim one must work their way up through the ranks of elected office before running for federal office.

Here’s the crux of it: Matheson never made those claims against his male opponents. He did not say they were not ready, that they were inexperienced (even with ZERO time in office) or that they were not smart enough to handle the job.

This kind of subtle – and not-so-subtle – messaging is damaging to all women, whether. It plays into an underlying societal meme that women are not suited for “those kinds” of jobs. Everybody wants to see women succeed – in theory. When it comes to actually putting it into practice, well, welcome to the glass ceiling. Before you say there is no such thing, just take a minute and think about the attacks that come specifically aimed at women (and even more so, at conservative women) who run for political office…….they are very different than the “attacks” aimed at a male candidate. (And if you ARE saying there is no such bias, chances are really, really good you’re a guy.)

I know Matheson has hired women. I happen to know he’s married to one, too. But when has Matheson ever called into question the readiness, experience, or intelligence of the men who ran against him the way he is doing with Mia? I know I couldn’t find it. He’s not running on his own record, nor his lack of leadership over the last 12 years, nor his vision of the future. Instead, he’s deflecting scrutiny by attacking Mayor Love in unprecedented ways.

He should be ashamed. And so should the people who fall for it. As this race continues to heat up – and it will – watch what he says. He has started down an ugly path. I expect it will only get worse.

Let me share one final tidbit. As I was digging for information on Matheson’s other races I found this nugget: About this time in 2010, Dan Jones predicated Matheson would win with a 26-point spread. In reality, he barely passed the 50% mark and defeated Morgan Philpot by a mere 4.4%. This race is much closer. Mark my words: Mia is going to win this one.

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4 Responses to “Jim Matheson’s war on women”

  1. jbtalcott Says:

    Mia’s simple answers to complex problems give ample proof that she is not prepared for Congress. She doesn’t seem to have a clue as to the ramifications her extreme positions on such issues as student loans and the effects those positions could have on Utah residents.

    I am certainly no great fan of Matheson, but he does put the people he represents ahead of any blind ideology. He seems to have the knack of pissing off members of both political parties, which would indicate that he is doing something right in the current political climate.

  2. Lindsey Petersen Says:

    I’m not going to portray myself as an intensely politically educated person – and I’m also not a feminist – BUT as a casually political person, I’m totally turned off by Matheson’s tactics this election. His approach does not make him see more qualified, in fact, it makes me feel quite a bit less confident in him.

  3. George Says:

    I was amazed at a recent event at a Senior Center. Rep. Matheson wasn’t there but had a relative represent him. I wish I had a recording on what was said as I believe it would fail a fact check on every case. Almost all of what he said was being negative.

    He can’t run on his record. What bills has he passed?

    He whines about redistricting when he personally said he could have run in the 2nd, 3rd or 4th district and it wasn’t what was the reason he didn’t run for Governor or US Senator. He said the new districts were no more republican than what he has been winning in. He picked the 4th because it was more urban and he polled better, even though he lives in the 2nd and will do so next year.

    He distorts Mia’s record and her statements.

    Yes, we have outside groups being jerks, but has he forgotten the personal Pledge he took in March of this year of how he would run his campaign?

    For the last few years, when has he had public town halls anyone could come to? He has avoided being available.

  4. ERIC in Murray Says:

    Holly:

    Your site is infected by kiddy-diddling Liberals like JBT and DickWarnockkk. Sad but true.

    METHisSIN=PIGlowSEA

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