Tag Archives: politics

Women Are More Effective Politicians, Study Says

Women politicians bring home the bacon more to their district, not to mention sponsor, co-sponsor and get enacted more bills than their male counterparts, according to a forthcoming study in the American Journal of Political Science. Univeristy of Chicago professor Christopher Berry and Stanford doctoral candidate Sarah Anzia compared male and female politicians to discover who is more effective. Not who is more popular or who gets more votes, but who can be the most effective lawmaker. Berry and Anzia concluded that because women are far less well-represented than men in all levels of government, perhaps it is only the best-of-the-best who make it and as a result, women get more done. Between 1984 and 2004, women brought an average of $49 million more back to their home districts than their male counterparts did, which held true regardless of geography. Women also sponsored an average of three more bills per Congress, co-sponsored an average of 26 more bills per Congress, and attracted more co-sponsors than their male colleagues. These findings don’t mean that women are better politicians, of course, but it appears to mean that when a woman finally gets elected, it is because she is really good at what she does. Hmph, I wonder if there’s some way this study could explain Sarah Palin? [Newsweek] Keep reading »

Why Are Politicians Attempting To Redefine Rape?

The “No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act” redefines “real” rape as only that which is “forcible” and has been co-sponsored by 173 mostly Republican legislators and was called a “top priority” by Speaker of the House John Boehner. Likely knowing that fully criminalizing abortion is impossible, politicians are going after the funding of abortions in certain cases of rape and incest. Slipped a roofie and raped while you are unconscious? Raped while you are blackout drunk and unable to consent? Sexually assaulted by your uncle at age 19? If you are poor and need governmental funding to help terminate a pregnancy resulting from this horrific acts, there will be no help for you.

I hope your breakfast is sitting well with you, because you’re about to get queasy if you read on. Keep reading »

Gabrielle Giffords Loves Riding Her Motorcycle, Eating Pie

For the past two weeks, many of you, like myself, have probably clicked on numerous stories about Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona Congresswoman who was shot in the head, along with six others, in a supermarket parking lot earlier this month. Many of the headlines sound encouraging, though we all know that recovery will be a very long road. The latest is that Giffords was able to stand up with assistance, and will be leaving the intensive care unit and moving to a rehabilitation hospital tomorrow. [AZ Central]

I was especially struck by the New York Post‘s headline on this today. The large type at the top of the page read, “Gabby Stands,” as if talking about someone we all know personally. Because yesterday evening, I read an essay at CNN.com written by someone who does actually know Giffords well, journalist and author Tom Zoellner. Keep reading »

Shocking! Rush Limbaugh Insensitive Towards Rape Victims

rush limbaugh photo

“[After Saturday’s shooting in Arizona, when Sarah Palin and other conservatives were criticized for using at-times violent political rehtoric, a Time magazine reporter] said, well they should have just turned the other cheek and stopped defending themselves, and they would have shut this thing all down. So yeah, just, that’s what they used to tell women who were raped, wasn’t it? Just sit back and enjoy it, put some ice on it, like Clinton said, put some ice on the lip, you asked for it, your dress asked for it, just sit back and enjoy it. Isn’t that how they used to tell raped women to deal with it?”

— Radio host Rush Limbaugh is sensitive as always while talking about the Gabrielle Giffords shooting and subsequent criticisms against politicians like Sarah Palin and shock jocks like him. Seriously, dude, there is never a tasteful occasion to compare oneself to rape victims. Make your point some other way, OK? And don’t forget, everyone, this insensitive comment comes from the same guy who suggested the TSA “grope” the Obama daughters. Ick, ick, ick. [Media Matters For America] Keep reading »

Sarah Palin Lashes Out At Media After Gabrielle Giffords Shooting In Tucson

Sarah Palin has lashed out at critics who say her at-times violence-tinged political rhetoric influenced Jared Lee Loughner, the man who shot 14 people this weekend in Tuscon, Arizona, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. “After the shocking tragedy, I listened puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness, to the irresponsible statements of those attempting to apportion blame for this terrible event,” Palin said. “President Reagan said we must reject the idea that every time a law is broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions. Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own. They begin and end with the criminals who commit them, not collectively with all the citizens of a state, not with those who listen to talk radio, not with maps of swing district used by both sides of the aisle, not with law-abiding citizens who respectfully exercise their first amendment rights at campaign rallies, and not with those who proudly voted in the last election.” Keep reading »

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Shot In The Head In Tucson, Arizona

Gabrielle Giffords, a congresswoman from Arizona, was shot in the head this morning outside a Safeway grocery store in Tucson, Arizona, by a white male in his mid-20s. Witnesses said she and members of her staff were greeting the public when a gunman approached her from behind and shot into her head. He reportedly fired about 20 rounds; approximately 12 others were injured in the shooting. A staffer tackled the young gunman, who has been taken into custody. Rep. Giffords, 40, a Democrat, has been in office since January 2007. In March, her Tucson office had been vandalized right before the health care reform vote; her office spokesperson said she received “nasty and rude and hateful comments” at the time as well. She was recently elected to a third term. NPR and CNN have reported that Giffords died, but as of 3:20 p.m. on Saturday afternoon, her husband, an astronaut named Mark Kelly, had confirmed to a local TV station that she is still alive. Our thoughts go out to Gabrielle Giffords’ family and loved ones.

[New York Times]
[ABC News] Keep reading »

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