From today's Houston Chronicle, Texas Senior Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison endorses Mitt Romney.
Not much of a surprise, I know, but it's always worth seeing how these endorsements are phrased. The full endorsement is provided below, annotated with your diarist's toned-down reactions.
When it comes to dividing Americans on the basis of their gender, I know a little something about the subject. I grew up in a time when many people believed that men and women should not always be treated equally. It wasn't easy to break through the barriers of discrimination, and I'm glad I didn't have to do it alone. When I became the first woman to represent the state of Texas in the United States Senate, it was with the help of a lot of women - and a large number of men, too.You’re absolutely right, Kay. Not only is the Romney camp seeking to divide us from one another; they’re seeking to divide us from our jobs, our homes, our money, and our access to the American Dream. With their blind obedience to St. Grover of Norquist and other pledge-wielding right-wing fanatics, they're also seeking to divide us from the rule of constitutional law.
Over the course of my life, I've learned that something we take as an article of faith in our country is profoundly true: United, we can accomplish anything. I've also learned to question those who would seek to divide us. As we enter this election season, I'm afraid we are witnessing just such an attempt.
The Democrats and White House are talking a great deal about a Republican "war on women." Color me highly skeptical. All such talk makes me wonder: Do the major problems plaguing our nation these last few years have all that much to do with gender?Well, that's a curious question, but I think you’re missing the point here, Kay. When people declare a war on women, they’re focusing on the next few years (and on the Dark Ages). It’s not about “these last few years”. I don’t think that those in your party who are gearing up for the war on women are doing so because they blame us for the witless actions of the Bush administration, or for the slow climb out of the ensuing recession. Or, for that matter, the fact that, last I checked, the global economy was in a bit of a recession. If we're assigning blame for these problems, I'd guess that rich and powerful white men had a lot to do with it.
Are women somehow less concerned about unemployment than men? Do our nation's exploding deficits worry some of us less than others, merely because of our sex?Women are every bit as concerned about unemployment and deficits as men. Unlike you, however, many of us have firsthand experience with unemployment, low wages, mortgage foreclosures, looming personal debt, loss of health insurance, spiraling medical bills, caring for elderly parents, wondering how we can put our kids through college, and wondering whether we can ever retire.
When we see a government growing beyond its means, or regulations that shackle small businesses and drive down job creation, or laws that will redefine our health care industry and strip us of our individual freedoms, do women somehow care less than men?When it comes to redefining our health care industry, I think we can safely say that women care more than men. Pregnancy is not an equal opportunity outcome. The protections that women have finally begun to take for granted are being stripped away by those who believe that every sperm is sacred, and that every womb must be occupied.
To these people, removing access to abortion or contraception is only the first assault. Those spearheading this war on women want to foreclose their options to work outside the home. They want to ensure that the “right” sorts of people increase their birth rates, pronto, so that we can fend off the inevitable demographic trends that – for the rest of us – have enriched rather than imperiled our country.
These angry white men – men from your party, Kay, are seeing their patriarchal world fading into well-deserved oblivion. Unwilling to go gently into that good night, they’re willing to pull the pin on the grenade of female oppression and take us all down with them. Your party, Kay.
[Follow along below the gender gap for more...]
As a woman who has spent her life fighting to banish forever the ignorance that women are incapable of engaging the pressing issues of the day, I can tell you that the answer to all of those questions is no.Like Phyllis Schlafly and other prominent GOP women, you seem to have adopted the “I’ve Got Mine; F*ck You” approach to life. In the twilight of your career, you're ready to throw your lot in with the menfolk, and leave the women to fend for themselves. Stay classy, Kay.
All Americans are suffering. Unemployment is too high, economic growth is too low, and the Obama administration seems incapable of doing anything about it.Your party, Kay, plotted from Day 1 of the Obama administration to thwart his every move. Your party’s leadership, Kay, was willing to run our economy – and thus the world’s economy – off a cliff if it meant that President Obama would get the blame. Your party, Kay, was willing to block every job-creating initiative that President Obama advanced, just to ensure that you could turn him out of a job. Those who are suffering under the GOP's "just say no" policy are smart enough to see who has their back, and who's willing to stab them in the back.
We all need a change for the better, and those politicians who prefer to divide us rather than seek solutions deserve our scorn.Well, here I would have to agree with you, although “scorn” doesn’t make a dent in how I feel about “your” nominee, Mitt Romney.
I support Gov. Mitt Romney for president because he has a well-thought-out plan to get our economy back on track.Really, Kay? Where is this so-called “well-thought-out plan”? Why hasn’t he even shared it with the voters, this far into the election cycle? All we’ve heard from Mitt is that he understands business, and that he’ll create 500,000 jobs a month once he’s in office. That figure would be optimistic in the best of times; it’s laughable today. With Mitt, all you have are vague promises that even he doesn’t believe.
He recognizes that it is not government but the American people who have made our country great.Hmmm... so why would he run for the top spot in government? Why not continue his fantastic track record in business. Oh, wait. Never mind. He just needs to get into government long enough to dismantle the regulatory constraints and worker protections that hinder the “one percent” from achieving their dream of total control.
Men and women pursuing their hopes, seeking the fulfillment of the American dream. The success of our efforts to grow the economy will depend entirely on whether we make it easier or harder for them to accomplish that goal.Or issue unprecedented tax cuts while simultaneously waging two unfunded wars.
Good jobs. A government that doesn't rack up trillions of dollars of debt.
Families that are able to pay for their children's college.And legislators that won’t double student loan interest rates.
These are the goals that unite us. Ultimately, the American people will elect as president the person who has the best plan for realizing those goals.Yes, those pesky American people, hauling their sorry asses off to the polls, will indeed decide this one, Kay. Those of us who are unwilling to allow Mitt to simply buy his way into the presidency because it's his "turn".
President Barack Obama has had four years to take his best shot. What has that given us? Graduating seniors without job offers in unprecedented numbers. The largest government debt burden in the history of America. Retirees unable to keep their standards of living, and small-business owners facing stifling regulations.Sorry, Kay, but the economy is improving. Yeah, I know, that's a real problem for your party. It's like you've failed, even with that awesome "well-thought-out" obstructionist plan.
Now he pledges four more years of the same policies. Do we really want the same result? Rhetoric, no matter how divisive, will not change that fact.
If your party had been willing to pull in the same direction with our president, rather than gleefully obstructing him every step of the way (and openly telling the world that this deliberate obstruction was their plan), there’s a good chance that we’d be in much better shape.
Your party, Kay, was willing to do anything they could to keep that from happening.
We believe in America, and we are all in this together.Except for you, Kay. You’ve got yours, and you’re willing to deny the rest of us the hard-won rights and protections that enabled you to succeed.
Enjoy your moment in the sun with Mitt. Now that he's gotten what he wanted from you, you'll find yourself tossed onto the landfill like everyone else who finally capitulated and gave him an endorsement.
But while you're still on his good side, could you please check on that "well-thought-out plan?" Some of us would really get a kick out of seeing it. Thanks.