Todd Akin told supporters at a town hall that he believes employers should have the right to pay women less and the government should not enforce equal pay for equal work rules. Akin, whose infamous “legitimate” rape comments forced his campaign against Democratic Senator Claire McCaskillÂ into the national spotlight for a month, made the remarks in response to a question from the audience.
“You voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Why do you think it is okay for a woman to be paid less for doing the same work as a man?,” Akin was asked.
“Well, first of all, the premise of your question is that I’m making that particular distinction,” Akin responded. “I believe in free enterprise. I don’t think the government should be telling people what you pay and what you don’t pay. I think it’s about freedom. If someone wants to hire somebody and they agree on a salary, that’s fine, however it wants to work. So, the government sticking its nose into all kinds of things has gotten us into huge trouble.”
Akin made his comments about pay for women last week, when he also attacked his opponent, Claire McCaskill, for not behaving “ladylike” at their debate.
“First, Todd Akin said Claire’s not ‘ladylike’ because she’s standing up for working families, now he’s opposed to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay act because he believes employers should have the freedom to discriminate against their female employees,” a McCaskill spokesperson said via a statement, according to Talking Points Memo. “Once again, it’s clear that the problem isn’t what Todd Akin says, the problem is what Todd Akin believes.”
Akin, who complained that “the government sticking its nose into all kinds of things has gotten us into huge trouble,” has, according to On The Issues:
- Voted YES on banning federal health coverage that includes abortion. (May 2011)
- Voted NO on expanding research to more embryonic stem cell lines. (Jan 2007)
- Voted NO on allowing human embryonic stem cell research. (May 2005)
- Voted YES on restricting interstate transport of minors to get abortions. (Apr 2005)
- Voted YES on making it a crime to harm a fetus during another crime. (Feb 2004)
- Voted YES on banning partial-birth abortion except to save motherâ€™s life. (Oct 2003)
- Voted YES on forbidding human cloning for reproduction & medical research. (Feb 2003)
- Voted YES on funding for health providers who don’t provide abortion info. (Sep 2002)
- Voted YES on banning Family Planning funding in US aid abroad. (May 2001)
- Voted YES on federal crime to harm fetus while committing other crimes. (Apr 2001)
- Voted NO on prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation. (Nov 2007)
- Voted YES on Constitutionally defining marriage as one-man-one-woman. (Jul 2006)
- Voted YES on making the PATRIOT Act permanent. (Dec 2005)
- Voted YES on Constitutional Amendment banning same-sex marriage. (Sep 2004)
- Voted YES on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep 2004)
- Voted YES on constitutional amendment prohibiting flag desecration. (Jun 2003)
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Fox News Host’s Inaccurate Reporting Leads to False Right-Wing Speculation Breyer Was Forced Out
Barely minutes before 12:00 noon on Wednesday NBC News’ Pete Williams broke the news that Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer was going to announce he is retiring, at the end of the term.
Hours later Fox News host Shannon Bream breathlessly tweeted, “Multiple sources tell me Justice Breyer was not planning to announce his retirement today. They describe him as ‘upset’ with how this has played out. We still await any official notice from his office and/or the #SCOTUS public information office.”
That was 2:41 PM.
Her tweet was inaccurate – based on her own reporting, about a half-hour later.
At 3:14 PM Bream “clarified” her reporting, making clear that Justice Breyer “firmly decided” to retire on his own, and was merely “surprised” that a top-notch veteran Supreme Court reporter broke the news:
A bit more clarity. I’m told Justice Breyer had firmly decided on his own to retire and that an announcement was due very soon. And while it appears someone jumped the gun on that, better to characterize him as surprised by events today than “upset”.
— Shannon Bream (@ShannonBream) January 26, 2022
Her first tweet has received thousands of retweets and likes and led to false speculation among many right-wingers (adding to the already false claims from the far right) that President Joe Biden forced Justice Breyer out the door – something impossible (unless you do over a billion dollars in business with a bank where the son of a Supreme Court Justice works.)
Too late, the damage is done. Ordinarily many reporters will delete tweets that are inaccurate or wrong, then post the reason why, and a correction. Bream did not.
Over at the right-wing National Review, senior writer Charles C. W. Cooke posted an article titled: “Did the Democratic Party Preempt Justice Breyer’s Announcement to Force His Hand?”
Its only content: Bream’s inaccurate tweet and the words, “It certainly seems possible.”
Here are more results of Bream’s inaccurate reporting:
Chief political correspondent, Washington Examiner and Fox News contributor Byron York:
A little nudge… https://t.co/RZIafIzftL
— Byron York (@ByronYork) January 26, 2022
Another Washington Times columnist and a SiriusXMPatriot personality:
I called it! Liberals pushed it to media to try to play cover for Biden’s absolute failures. https://t.co/lxx5E2bwxi
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) January 26, 2022
Former senior advisor to the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC):
Psaki putting this out earlier is interesting – Breyer was NOT given the opportunity to decide how he was going to announce it because either her colleagues in the White House or her allies from the liberal dark money universe leaked it to force his hand.https://t.co/OShkwKC4di
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) January 26, 2022
Blogger at right wing website Hot Air:
guess: he gave the WH a heads up privately as a courtesy and they couldn’t resist leaking it to give their deeply demoralized base something to get excited about https://t.co/mwwnhDwINm
— Allahpundit (@allahpundit) January 26, 2022
Radio talk show host:
The Biden Admin needed a narrative change and BAD. https://t.co/PNVa5lBU3y
— Annie Frey (@anniefreyshow) January 26, 2022
Silenced by Psaki: Reporter Pushing Right Wing Talking Points Can’t Answer Press Secretary’s Basic Questions About Them
A reporter was silent after pushing right-wing talking points during the White House’s daily press briefing and being asked to explain her question. The Q&A was so disturbing one well-known political scientist weighed in on social media to declare the White House press corps an “embarrassment.”
“Just a quick question on inflation,” the unnamed reporter began as she asked her question on the administration’s plan to strengthen the social safety net and grow jobs. “Many believe that government spending is a big factor in the current inflation levels. Can you speak to concerns that spending plans that come out of Build Back Better aren’t paid for, and so could mean higher deficits and more inflation in the future.”
Psaki, a little stunned, confirmed she heard correctly: “Aren’t paid for? Build Back Better is paid for.”
The reporter was silent. As time moved on, so did Psaki.
“Entirely,” she added, definitively.
“Okay,” replied the reporter, apparently out of facts and with little understanding of what she was asking. “Can you speak to the concerns that are coming in that it’s not, actually?”
“Who are the concerns from though?” Psaki asked.
“Who’s saying it’s not paid for?” Psaki pressed.
“Because there have been a range of economists saying it’s entirely paid for, and that has been a priority for the President. It has also been concluded by a number of Nobel laureates and experts from a range of economic experts on the outside that it will not contribute to inflation. So those are the global experts that we would point to, but there may be others suggesting something else, but I don’t know who those people are,” she said, allowing the reporter to offer a different response, to possibly retain her dignity.
“So if those bills do pass it will not raise taxes?” the reporter asked, which is an entirely different question.
“Well, something being entirely paid for means that part of that is the highest income Americans highest that companies would be asked to pay a little bit more. That has been part of the proposal and part of reforming the tax system to make it more fair,” Psaki explained.
“So they’re also not expected to contribute to future inflation, then?”
“The Build Back Better Bill? Again, it’s fully paid for, we would point to Nobel laureates and a range of global economists who have conveyed that it would not contribute to inflationary pressures.”
Reporter: Can you speak to concerns that spending plans that come out of BBB aren’t paid for…
Psaki: BBB is paid for
Reporter: Can you speak to the concerns
Psaki: Who are the concerns from though?
Reporter: *silence* pic.twitter.com/PtoEpDXetZ
— Acyn (@Acyn) January 26, 2022
Influential Far Right Conservatives Ballistic Over Breyer Retirement: ‘They Must Be Stopped’
As soon as the news broke that Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer will retire at the end of the current session, right-wing activists began declaring that Breyer had been “bullied” into stepping down and therefore Republicans must do everything they can to block whomever President Joe Biden nominates to fill that seat.
The Left bullied Justice Breyer into retirement and now it will demand a justice who rubber stamps its liberal political agenda. And that’s what the Democrats will give them, because they’re beholden to the dark money supporters who helped elect them.
— Carrie Severino (@JCNSeverino) January 26, 2022
The Left forced Breyer off the Supreme Court and you can be sure they will require Biden to pick an extremist. (Remember, their core goal is to pack the Supreme Court.) Will Republicans play along? pic.twitter.com/b8s2t2kW8Q
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) January 26, 2022
Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America declared that Biden must use the vacancy to unify the nation by appointing to the court a “constitutionalist” (which is conservative code for “right-wing ideologue”).
Justice Bryer’s retirement is not unexpected. This presents @joebiden a great opportunity to be a unifying force for the nation by appointing a Constitutionalist to SCOTUS. @CWforA will be watching. https://t.co/Waw8gcmkb4 @CWforA @YWforA
— Penny Nance (@PYNance) January 26, 2022
Proclaiming that the Senate is the “our last line of defense against radical leftist SCOTUS justices,” Ohio Republican Senate candidate Josh Mandel used the opportunity to promote his own campaign.
The US Senate is our last line of defense against radical leftist SCOTUS justices.
This isn’t the time to send a squishy establishment RINO to Washington to sit back and sing kumbaya with Democrats and allow Joe Biden to appoint another justice like Kagan or Sotomayor.
— Josh Mandel (@JoshMandelOhio) January 26, 2022
Rep. Lauren Boebert proclaimed that Biden should take a hint from Breyer and “follow him out the door.”
Stephen Breyer is not the retirement we’ve been waiting for.
Biden should follow him out the door.
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) January 26, 2022
Right-wing activist Brigitte Gabriel openly asserted that it doesn’t even matter whom Biden nominates, “they must be stopped.”
I don’t trust whoever Joe Biden nominates to replace Stephen Breyer.
They must be stopped.
— Brigitte Gabriel (@ACTBrigitte) January 26, 2022
Right-wing commentator Matt Walsh demanded that the position remain vacant until following the midterm elections in November, insisting that “it would be an assault on our democracy” to confirm any nominee before then.
It would be an assault on our democracy to confirm a Supreme Court pick before the midterm elections. Democrats must let the people have their say.
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) January 26, 2022
Taking things a step further, radical Arizona state Sen. Wendy Rogers called on the U.S. Senate to “filibuster, stall, delay and hold Biden’s Supreme Court pick until 2024.”
— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) January 26, 2022
This article was originally published by Right Wing Watch and is republished here by permission.
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