Before her latest political flub in which she called Republicans “anti-women” with an agenda equivalent to “a war on women,” new Democratic Party chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz managed to politicize one of the Ten Commandments.
In a May 4 DNC chair speech, Wasserman Schultz took the Bible’s Ninth Commandment, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor,” onto the political battlefield, asking her fellow Democrats to pledge they would “let no man or woman bear false witness against a Democrat.”
The speech was Wasserman Schultz’s first as DNC chair, and an attempt to galvanize her political base. She spoke of how she beat “the good ole boys” in the Democratic Party to rise to chair spot.
Wasserman Schultz’s use of inflammatory rhetoric made headlines again on Thursday after she told reporters “it’s just so hard” for her “to grasp how they [Republicans] could be so anti-women as they are.” She went on to say the GOP’s “war on women” would help Democrats pick up large gains in the next election, which she is set to oversee for the party.
“The pushback and the guttural reaction from women against the Republican’s agenda out of the gate, the war on women that the Republicans have been waging since they took over the House, I think is going to not only restore but possibly helps us exceed the president’s margin of victory in the next election,” Wasserman Schultz said.
The new DNC chair’s attack on Republicans didn’t go unnoticed by House GOP women. In a joint statement, several GOP congresswomen, including House GOP Conference vice chair Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington, and Reps. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, ripped into Wasserman Schultz’s attack on Republicans, and tied MSNBC host Ed Schultz’s dig at conservative radio host Laura Ingraham. “Apparently it’s open season on Republican women,” they said. “Between Ed Schultz’s tasteless insult of a conservative woman radio host, and Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz’s comments that the Republican Party is ‘anti-women,’ the tone in Washington, D.C., has reached a new low.”
The Republican women then called Wasserman Schultz’s accusations “baseless” and “inaccurate” and defended their record.
“Republican women fight every day for the women who can’t start a business because of burdensome taxes and regulations, for the women who worry that we are capping their children’s future and trading it to China in exchange for cheap loans, for the women who deserve to make their own health-care choices and for this year’s young women graduates who are entering a job market stagnated by Washington-driven uncertainty,” they said. “It’s disappointing that Democrats would rather call names and use such divisive language than find areas where we can work together on behalf of American women and families.”
Other GOP congresswomen signing onto the letter ripping back at Wasserman Schultz included Reps. Diane Black of Tennessee, Sandy Adams and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, Judy Biggert of Illinois, Ann Marie Buerkle and Nan Hayworth of New York, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Renee Ellmers of North Carolina, Vicky Hartzler of Missouri, Lynn Jenkins of Kansas, Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, Mary Bono Mack of California, Candice Miller of Michigan and Martha Roby of Alabama.
DNC spokesman Brad Woodhouse responds:
“This issue simply is not up for debate. If your party opposes equal pay for equal work, includes in its platform an opposition to a woman’s right to choose, tries to redefine the definition of rape, tries to end funding for women’s health care services like breast cancer screening and supports allowing insurance companies to discriminate based on pre- existing conditions what else would any reasonable American conclude?”