I didn’t blog about this because, eh, but last night on a conference call for supporters (and eavesdropping bloggers) Michele Bachmann kept referring to the upcoming Iowa Straw Poll (which she won, in August) when she meant the upcoming Iowa caucuses (which she will not win, in January).
Is there a German word for Freudian slip plus wishful thinking, with maybe a hint of needing a nap?
Quite unlike prior presidential and vice presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin, Bachmann has consistently downplayed the fact that she is a woman in her campaign. She never mentions any of the barriers that would be broken if she were to become the first female Republican presidential nominee or the first female president. She doesn’t identify as a feminist or embrace any particularly feminist or pro-woman policies. She talks about how wives should be “submissive” to their husbands, and on Women’s Equality Day, she shared a stage in South Carolina with the state’s first woman governor and entirely ignored the fact that it was the 91st anniversary of women’s suffrage.
Jennifer Lawless, director of the Women and Politics Institute at American University, said Bachmann’s decision to downplay her gender in her campaign could be a smart electoral strategy to win over the evangelical, conservative base.
“She does not embrace feminist policies or feminist principles,” said Lawless.
1. Talking about how wives should be submissive to their husbands is not “downplaying the fact that you are a woman.” It is the opposite of that, especially when evangelical conservatives are your base.
2. Not identifying as a feminist is not the same as “downplaying the fact that you are a woman,” just as identifying as a feminist is not the same as “making a big deal out of the fact that you are a woman.”