WASHINGTON--John Edwards campaign advisor Kate Michelman--former NARAL president-- is attacking frontrunner Hillary Rodham Clinton--the first female with a real chance of being elected president-- for complaining that her male rivals are "piling on."
"It's trying to have it both ways; walk the fence, something Senator Clinton's good at. At one minute the strong woman ready to lead, the next, she's the woman under attack, disingenuously playing the victim card as a means of trying to avoid giving honest, direct answers to legitimate questions," Michelman said in a statement the campaign issued Saturday.
click below for entire statement...
Michelman has impeccable creditionals when it comes to the struggle for womens equality and supporting women cracking glass ceilings. As the former president of NARAL, she has been a long-time national leader in the abortions rights movement.
Michelman goes after Clinton for playing the gender card after Clinton botch answers in Tuesday's debate in Philadelphia--with Edwards part of an aggresive assault.
"As a woman who's been in the public eye and experienced scrutiny, as a woman who knows how hard it can be for women to earn their seat at the leadership table, how hard women have to work just to get the same opportunities, this distresses me," she said.
Statement from Kate Michelman
Chapel Hill, North Carolina – John Edwards for President Campaign Advisor and Former President of NARAL Pro-Choice America, Kate Michelman, today posted the following statement on OpenLeft.com. A link to her post and the full text are below:
We’ve Come a Long Way, by Kate Michelman
Remember the commercial:
We've come a long way baby.
Well, have we? That's the question American women need to ask themselves.
We earn 77 cents for every dollar a man makes.
We are 48% more likely to live in poverty than men.
17 million adult women lack health insurance.
Millions of us struggle to balance jobs and the needs of our families.
A long way? Not nearly long enough.
But now that we have the first viable female candidate for President of the United States, things will get better for women, right? Her candidacy will positively affect public perception regarding women in politics and business - and that change will benefit all women - even the women struggling in dead end jobs, scrapping by on minimum wage, raising their families on their own?
Not so fast.
As women take a second look at the candidates, now that attention is focusing more on the issues and how each of the candidates would lead, how they would make decisions; now that making a choice is becoming real, less about celebrity, more about being president, legitimate questions are being raised about Senator Clinton.
And we're all learning something.
When unchallenged, in a comfortable, controlled situation, Senator Clinton embraces her political elevation into the "boys club." She is quick to assure listeners she is plenty tough enough, that she's battled tested, ready to play be the same rules as the boys.
But when she's challenged, when legitimate questions are asked, questions she should be prepared to answer and discuss, she is just as quick to raise the white flag and look for a change in the rules. She then calls questioning, 'attacking;' she calls debate among her peers, 'piling on.'
It's a political strategy, no doubt focus grouped and poll tested: make it look unseemly that this group of men would question her and hold her accountable for her record.
It's trying to have it both ways; walk the fence, something Senator Clinton's good at. At one minute the strong woman ready to lead, the next, she's the woman under attack, disingenuously playing the victim card as a means of trying to avoid giving honest, direct answers to legitimate questions.
As a woman who's been in the public eye and experienced scrutiny, as a woman who knows how hard it can be for women to earn their seat at the leadership table, how hard women have to work just to get the same opportunities, this distresses me.
It is not presidential.
Any serious candidate for president should have to answer tough questions and defend their record.
Any serious candidate for president should make their views clear and let the American people know where they stand on issues.
And any serious candidate for president should be held to the same standard - whether man or woman.
Have we have come a long way? Well, far enough to know better than to use our gender as a shield when the questions get too hot.