Clearly I am a Martha Coakley fan. I have made no effort to hide that fact here. I couldn't be more excited that she is running for the Senate and I think that this state and this country would be lucky to have a woman like her representing our interests. She is a woman who hails from a small town and worked her way to a position of higher power based solely on her own merits. She wasn't born with the Kennedy name or the proverbial silver spoon in her mouth and I ask how many politicians in Massachusetts can say that? I bet you can count them on one hand. I think she would be as effective as a Senator as she was as a District Attorney and currently as Attorney General.
What I am not a fan of? Commentators who are blatantly biased against women politicians. Blatantly. Commentators who think that women who are running for office need to be in some way taken to task, or asked the "hard questions" opposed to their male counterparts who somehow have earned the right to run for office simply because they were born with a penis in between their legs.
The chauvinistic pig who is commits this crime hand over fist more than the others? Of course it's none other than the infamous Chris Mathews. His crimes against women are endless and in his interview last night with Coakley he once again proved what kind of man he really is. On the day of her announcement for the Senate, Matthews asked Coakley a series of loaded and politically charged questions. He was dismissive and condensing and he spoke over her responses numerous times.
Sadly, this is not the first, nor do I imagine that this will be the last time that Matthews has spoken down to a woman appearing on his show. A woman who mind you is far more intelligent than he will ever be. Some of his other career highlights include a 2007 interview of Erin Burnett, a CNBC business news anchor, whom he asked to lean into the camera. "Come in closer. Really close," he said to a rattled Burnett. After which he laughed and said, "Just kidding, you look great....You're a knockout. "
In January, Matthews was forced to make an on air apology to Hillary Clinton for a comment that he made about her political achievements. He had previously said that Clinton owed her Senate seat and her presidential bid to the fact that he husband had "messed around," referring to the sex scandal that led to her husband's impeachment. In years past he has also referred to Clinton as "She Devil" and "Nurse Ratched," which refers to a scheming and manipulative character. He call her "Madame Defarge" and has compared her to a "strip-teaser." He has even (and this one really gets me) questioned whether she is a "convincing mom." Sadly, this list goes on and on.
It turns out that I am not the only one who is appalled by this man. A nonpartisan group, called the New Agenda was created with one of it's main goals being the firing of Matthews. Media Matters has also begun a campaign against Matthews for his years of blatant bias against women on Hardball.
Luckily for us women out there, Matthew's contract is up for renewal next year. It is unclear if he will renew, and there is talk that he may run for the Senate in 2010 in his home state of Pennsylvania. I wish him the worst of luck in both these endeavours. Actually, I take that back. I hope he does run and he wins and he finds himself on the same side of the aisle as Coakley. Maybe then she can show him how a "real" Senator can act and perhaps she will explain to him the actual definition of class, something that seems to be lacking from his vocabulary.
If you are interesting in volunteering or contributing to the Coakley campaign, her website can be found here. As for me? Well, I can guarantee you that I just watched my last episode of Hardball.
Photo from here.