WIMN’s Voices: A Group Blog on Women, Media, AND…


gfeldts Icon Posted by Gloria Feldt

June 30th, 2008

Jake Tapper, ABC News Senior National Correspondent, in his blog “Political Punch” June 27 post “McCain Gambles with Awkward Joke” started a bit of a blog-o-flap among some feminists who though the senator’s remark about wife beating grossly inappropriate and perhaps insensitive to domestic abuse. Here’s the relevant excerpt:

In an interview with the Las Vegas Sun, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., was asked by columnist Jon Ralston why he didn’t choose Gov. Jim Gibbons to chair his Nevada campaign…
Maybe it’s the governor’s approval rating and you are running from him like you are from the president? Asked Ralston in a question McCain clearly found loaded.
Said McCain, chuckling, “And I stopped beating my wife just a couple of weeks ago.”
Some have found the subject of McCain’s joke — wife-beating — inappropriate.
To be clear, McCain was alluding to the fictitious leading question “When did you stop beating your wife, senator?” It’s a bit of distasteful DC yuckery so commonly quoted it’s hackneyed.
But considering the subject McCain was discussing at the time, to allude to that joke was, well, …..awkward!
Gov. Gibbons last month filed for divorce from his wife Dawn citing incompatiblity…

There are several issues here and I’ll take a moment to sort them out:

1. McCain’s retrograde record on women is bad enough in itself to warrant a full frontal expose by as many feminist bloggers and MSM journalists as possible. He has a 100% anti-choice voting record, not just on abortion but also on family planning funding, access to emergency contraception, medically accurate sex education, gag rules, and the gamut. He has said he opposes the Lilly Ledbetter equal pay act even though he wasn’t there to vote against it and that he wants to see Roe v Wade overturned which confirms that he’s in the same league with those who want women to be barefoot and pregnant. He intends to appoint Supreme Court justices in the mold of John Roberts and Samuel Alito.

2. The derivation of the “have you stopped beating your wife?” phrase which is an old saw that is used to illustrate an argument you can’t win, but which I would suggest was an exceedingly poor choice of words for McCain because even aside from its sexist tinge…

3. There have been rumors for many years in AZ (where I lived for 18 years and had the misfortune of trying to work with McCain on behalf of Planned Parenthood since his first race for Congress in 1982) that he abused Cindy, verbally and physically. From my personal experience with the man and his explosive, often out of control temper, I suspect there is fire behind the smoke; however, I doubt we will ever know. Because he was Barry Goldwater’s successor, he has always been protected by the Republican establishment in AZ, including the press.

4. In a recent related log on the fire, Clayton “relax and enjoy it” Williams was slated to give a fundraiser for McCain recently. That comment, in which Williams was advising what to do in case of rape or bad weather, propelled Ann Richards to her unlikely victory over Williams for Texas governor in 1990. McCain cancelled the event when the flap was highlighted by the media, but only then. Clearly, he had no compunction about Claytie’s support until it became a political liability. And indeed, he kept the money that had been raised. The Williams-Richards episode is recent enough and legendary enough that there’s no way McCain and his staff could not have known about it.

5. Journalists should be careful about repeating allegations, and to guard against connecting dots that do not relate to one another. Still, you know that McCain and the Republicans will be throwing much worse at Obama without one moments’ concern about whether they are being accurate or not, and that in a political campaign it is in fact the little things like flippant use of sexist comments that define the candidates’ character.

There’s plenty to define McCain’s character as well as his voting record as anti-woman, anti-choice, anti-civil rights expansions in general, let alone a water carrier for the Bush administration’s retrograde policies on the war without gambling too much on issues that might be subject to challenge though. He’s clearly not the moderate or maverick most of the press believes he is, and we need to out that often enough that it seeps into public awareness. More research would be very helpful, but no question about it, John McCain is harmful to women’s health, rights, and equality.


  1. napa parts
    September 15th, 2015 09:33

    Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you really realize what you are speaking approximately! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally visit my site =). We may have a hyperlink trade agreement between us!

  2. business analyst
    September 15th, 2015 10:23

    Hi there very nice site!! Guy .. Excellent .. Amazing .. I will bookmark your site and take the feeds additionally¡KI am glad to search out numerous useful information right here in the publish, we want develop more strategies on this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

  3. adam regiaba
    September 20th, 2015 23:01

    Does your weblog have a contact page? I’m having a tough time locating it but, I’d like to send you an e-mail. I’ve got some suggestions for your weblog you may be interested in hearing. Either way, wonderful web site and I appear forward to seeing it expand more than time.

  4. Zella Younie
    September 22nd, 2015 05:41

    You have mentioned very interesting details! ps decent website.

  5. %26%231603%3B%26%231588%3B%26%231601%3B%26%2332%3B%26%231578%3B%26%231587%3B%26%231585%3B%26%231576%3B%26%231575%3B%26%231578%3B%26%2332%3B%26%231605%3B%26%231610%3B%26%231575%3B%26%231607%3B
    October 1st, 2015 23:26

    Spot lets start function on this write-up, I actually believe this amazing internet site requirements a lot much more consideration. I’ll apt to be once once again to read an excellent deal far more, a lot of thanks for that info.

  6. free background check on a person
    October 10th, 2015 20:10

    You created some decent points there. I looked on the net for any issue and located most individuals goes in addition to with all your web site.

  7. Porn
    October 11th, 2015 19:25

    This is my very first time i check out here. I located so a lot of entertaining stuff within your blog, especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your posts, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here! Maintain up the exceptional work.

  8. sex toys
    October 13th, 2015 09:50

    If you happen to acquiring a substantial repayment, you have to maintain in mind what quantity of cash you could be deducting coming from paydays or perhaps spending dollars on for quarterly income taxes.

  9. %26%231491%3B%26%231512%3B%26%231493%3B%26%231512%3B%26%2332%3B%26%231492%3B%26%231500%3B%26%231493%3B%26%231497%3B
    November 13th, 2015 09:32

    really nice post, i definitely enjoy this wonderful web site, persist with it

  10. vaillance courtage
    November 14th, 2015 23:09

    Perfectly composed content , thankyou for entropy.

  11. %26%231711%3B%26%231604%3B%26%231740%3B%26%231606%3B%26%2332%3B%26%231670%3B%26%231578%3B
    November 18th, 2015 00:49

    Cool text dude, maintain up the very good function, just shared this with the mates

  12. ãøåø äìåé
    November 21st, 2015 23:42

    I went more than this website and I believe you might have a great deal of exceptional information , saved to favorites (:.

  13. hegn
    December 29th, 2015 05:39

    I am curious to discover out what blog system you’re utilizing? I’m experiencing some minor security problems with my latest blog and I would prefer to uncover a thing much more risk-free. Do you have got any recommendations?

  14. art
    January 1st, 2016 03:21

    dress shops that provide discounts are very typical in our spot and i constantly shop at them’

  15. edmonton cleaning company
    January 2nd, 2016 09:11

    Would appreciate to constantly get updated wonderful blog ! .

  16. o sureyi kaldir anani sikerim senin
    January 22nd, 2016 00:47

    I have beeing scouring the google for this data and just needed to thank you for the post. BTW, merely off subject, how can I get a duplicate of this theme? - Thanks

  17. disabiled bathroom fitter sheffield
    March 21st, 2016 04:53

    Great beat ! I wish to apprentice although you amend your web website, how can i subscribe for a blog website? The account aided me a appropriate deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided bright clear notion

  18. fix battery
    June 5th, 2016 03:06

    I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again as exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.

Leave a Reply