Babbles incoherently. Not showing up. Empty dress. Video girl.
These verbal assaults on Secretary of State and U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes from Mitch McConnell and his allies are simply code words for their true feelings toward women and strong female candidates.
Women make up nearly half of the labor force and over half of the electorate in Kentucky, yet remain severely underrepresented in all levels of government. Women only hold 18 percent of the seats in Congress, and the United States trails behind the rest of the world — ranking 80th in the number of women in our national legislature.
McConnell's offensive and disparaging attacks only continue his shameful record of not representing women.
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When he rolled out his "Women for Team Mitch" group in August, it alarmed all of us who actually know where he stands.
We have seen the votes he has cast over the past 30 years. McConnell voted against equal pay for equal work, labeling it as just another "special interest vote."
We dare him to relay that to the women across the commonwealth who make 79 cents for every dollar and lose out on wages they have earned simply because of their gender. Pay discrimination shortchanges Kentucky women and their families.
McConnell also voted against the Violence Against Women Act — a measure that secures protections and services for women and helps them live their lives free from fear of violence and free to pursue their own futures.
Adding insult to injury, McConnell also lied about supporting the act. Facts don't lie when you refuse to stand up for women time and time again.
As we saw over the course of the government shutdown negotiations, it was the women of the Senate who came together, sought common ground and displayed real leadership. Meanwhile, McConnell hid in the shadows, and in the 11th hour, attempted to take credit for their work.
Grimes will join this bipartisan, common-sense coalition of female senators and reach across the aisle to avoid careening from manufactured crisis to manufactured crisis.
It is time to elect a senator we can all be proud of. Kentucky needs a senator who will level the playing field and ensure that every door is open for our daughters and granddaughters. That's why I am supporting Grimes. She brings a common-sense approach to the issues facing Kentucky families. She entered public service to give a voice to the voiceless — experience she gained as an attorney for victims of domestic violence.
As our secretary of state — Kentucky's only female constitutional officer — she has worked across the aisle to achieve real solutions. I worked closely with her as a sponsor on legislation that protects domestic violence victims' right to vote. This last session, Grimes also championed legislation that ensures our men and women in uniform can have their voices heard while fighting for our country overseas.
Just as she has as secretary of state, Grimes will continue to fight for the working families of Kentucky when elected as the commonwealth's first female U.S. senator. She will work to create good-paying jobs, fight to close the gender wage gap and raise the minimum wage to ensure middle class security for women and their families.
The choice could not be clearer. Over the next 12 months it is up to all of us to come together and retire McConnell.
Nov. 20 Herald-Leader article, "Doctored photo puts Grimes on offensive; GOP operatives accused of 'sexualized attack'"