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Still a boys club by @BloggersRUs

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Still a boys club

by Tom Sullivan


Still image from Greg Murphy campaign video.

Democrats sent nearly 40 women to Congress in last fall’s elections. Republicans, only four. That’s quite a ratio.

The Hill reports:

Democrats are again looking to put Republicans on the defensive in 2020 after a string of GOP legislatures passed a number of actions restricting abortions, including in Alabama where the procedure was banned under almost all circumstances.

It is a lesson that Republicans have absorbed this year, as they look to prove they are a big tent party and look to dispel the notion it’s the party of old white men.

They will have to work harder to prove themselves in North Carolina.

Special elections this summer in North Carolina will fill two additional vacant House seats. One is the infamous “do-over” election ordered after election fraud tainted results in NC-9 and the state Board of Elections refused to certify results. The other is a special election in NC-3 to fill the vacancy created by the death in February of Republican Walter Jones.

Among the over two dozen Republicans vying for those seats in the spring primaries, only one woman has a shot at advancing to the general elections on September 10.

Leigh Brown is not her. People in Washington, D.C. who encouraged the realtor to jump into the NC-9 primary (Brown lives in NC-8) were gone when it came time to campaign.

“That’s a little frustrating to have initial conversations and then follow up and be ghosted,” Brown told Politico:

GOP consultants and candidates acknowledge their recruitment and resources lag far behind Democrats. And no centralized group exists to provide hiring advice, social media guidance, press training, or messaging tactics to candidates. Democrats, on the other hand, have the behemoth EMILY’s List network, as well as groups focused on recruiting immigrants, women of color, female veterans and more.

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) refocused her leadership PAC (E-PAC) this year on electing more Republican women. Stefanik and a new super PAC “Winning for Women” turned their eyes to pediatrician Joan Perry in NC-3 after Brown finished a distant fourth in NC-9 to state senator Dan Bishop of “bathroom bill” fame. Bishop faces Democrat Dan McCready on September 10.

Perry herself finished seven points behind Greg Murphy, a urologic surgeon, in a field of 17 Republicans vying for the Jones seat. Both live in NC-3; only half of the GOP candidates in the NC-9 primary did. The two anti-abortion physicians facing each other in the July 9 runoff will try to out-Trump each other.

On that score, Murphy is already ahead. House Freedom Caucus chair Mark Meadows (NC-11) has endorsed Murphy, as has “Women for Trump.” The runoff winner will face Democrat Allen Thomas, the former mayor of Greenville, NC, on September 10. Donald Trump won NC-3 by nearly 24 points.

Even as Republicans promote their efforts to attract women (as stories in Politico and The Hill show), those efforts appear disjointed, if not half-hearted, despite party boasts of how many female and minority candidates it is wooing:

Yet according to recent data collected by The Associated Press, just 38 of 172 declared Republican House challengers for the 2020 elections were women, or around 1 in 5. That compares with 84 of 222 declared House Democratic challengers, nearly 2 in 5.

Meanwhile, over half of Democrats‘ 2018 freshman class in the House are women.



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