Tag Archives: mitt romney

The Most Troubling Aspects of the 2012 Election

2012 election graphic8:15a.m., Pacific Standard Time on November 6, and it feels like this election started two decades ago. Finally we’re arrived at Election Day. Tomorrow we won’t have to sit through more attack ads blowing up our enjoyment of The Walking Dead or Leverage. I will deeply appreciate Wednesday for that, even if the country isn’t in agreement on who won or if the news cycle leads with which candidates are suing which other candidates for a recount. The dust won’t have settled on much of what Americans will vote for today, but even now, with the polls open and people queuing up for their moment with a ballot, there are a few issues brought up by the 2012 election. And some of them are disturbing. In no particular order:

The absence of medical expertise to inform laws that affect reproductive health, women’s health, and abortion—From Representative Steve King, candidates Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock, and carved into the Republican Party Platform came many moments of presumption and imagination about how human bodies function and what role God plays in conception or the biological prevention of conception. Sure, pro-choice advocates have fumed at disingenuous statements around medical care before and it’s not new that anyone would worry that conservative, ill-informed men feel free to write laws with no or misleading medical evidence taken into account. But this election cycle from the primary through the general election, and woven through many of the state races for Congress we saw wave after wave of misogyny and hate, directed at anyone with a uterus. The fight against women was multi-faceted, repeatedly hitting on access to contraception, defunding the “antiChrist” that is Planned Parenthood, attempts to install “personhood” legislation, demonizing rape survivors who chose to terminate a resulting pregnancy, inventing new restrictions on abortioneven to save the life of the mother—and on and on. That the rhetoric around these issues was so extreme and so consistently present throughout the range of races across the country speaks to a concerted effort to find new ways to control the domain of debate and the outcome. Read More…

Recapping Last Night’s Debate

Town Hall Debate 2012While we’re all chuckling at the “binder full of women” jokes, I’d like to look at a few other moments from last night, some of which I thought were powerful and some which troubled me. After a night of slumber, my brain has drawn these conclusions, presented in no particular order:

The town hall format is not good for showing the candidates’s aggression, but it makes for exciting TV—Was Mitt about to grapple with the President? It looked like that from the vantage point of my sofa, on at least two occasions. The film stills make it look like they’re blessing each other or practicing their “sit down” drills for their dogs. Turns out, podiums make good fences.

Someone told Barack Obama to keep his back turned on Romney—I lost count of the number of times that the President would respond to his challenger while facing the opposite direction from him. And he kept his eye contact to a minimum. I don’t know if David Axelrod’s new schtick is to act all above the contender, but Obama brought out the cool shoulder last night something fierce. Read More…

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