Sunday, July 29

Cleavage comments lead to fundraising email

Hillary Clinton 's campaign has developed a reputation that it will respond strongly to any perceived attacks. It happened again this week when the Washington Post's fashion writer Robin Givhan, took note of the Clinton's cleavage showing from a low neckline during a speech on the Senate floor:

It was startling to see that small acknowledgment of sexuality and femininity peeking out of the conservative -- aesthetically speaking -- environment of Congress. After all, it wasn't until the early '90s that women were even allowed to wear pants on the Senate floor. It was even more surprising to note that it was coming from Clinton, someone who has been so publicly ambivalent about style, image and the burdens of both.
The focus on Clinton's bosom rather than her national security policy drew an explosion of "thousands of angry letters and calls" from readers, mostly women, the newspaper's ombudsman later wrote.

Senior Clinton adviser Ann Lewis seized on the story to send out this fundraising email which starts:
Can you believe that The Washington Post wrote a 746-word article on Hillary's cleavage? ..... I've seen some off-topic press coverage--but talking about body parts? That is grossly inappropriate.

Frankly, focusing on women's bodies instead of their ideas is insulting. It's insulting to every women 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.
Howard Kurtz with Anne E. Kornblut's column in the Washington Post blog The Trail offers a defense which quotes Givhan as saying, "It was about a style of dress. People have gone down the road of saying, 'I can't believe you're writing about her breasts.' I wasn't writing about her breasts. I was writing about her neckline."

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