Friday, July 27, 2007

Senators Gone Wild!

A week ago the Washington Post ran an article, in its Style section that noted Hillary Clinton's low neckline in a speech she gave on the Senate floor. The article is pretty ridiculous, but it's in the Style section, and written by a Pulitzer Prize winning fashion reporter.

Crass as it was, the piece was great news for the Senator's presidential campaign. Clinton has made an effort to play up her gender, and its historical significance, in speeches, commercials and emails.

The article has given the issue loads of free publicity, and Clinton has capitalized on it by sending out a fundraising email based on its contents. As Clinton aide Ann Lewis put it,

"Frankly, focusing on women’s bodies instead of their ideas is insulting. It’s insulting to every woman who has ever tried to be taken seriously in a business meeting. It’s insulting to our daughters — and our sons — who are constantly pressured by the media to grow up too fast."

The fund-raising email asks: "Clothes? Cleavage? Make- Up? What's really important in this race?" (A seeming take- off of John Edwards' youtube video about everyone making such a big deal about his hair)

The move is smart because it can even attract more women to vote for (and donate to) Sen. Clinton. All the attention would be to Clinton's political benefit, because it keeps her issue (rightly or wrongly) in the media.

The constant talk about a candidate's gender, a silly topic to begin with, could make some women indignant and movited. Women getting angry that such a big deal is being made is great for the Senator, so long as no one's angry at her.

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