Battle over ABC analyst’s ‘sexist’ dig at GOP congresswoman conjures up inconvenient memories

Photos: Flickr / Saul Loeb – Pool/Getty Images

ABC political analyst Matthew Dowd has stuck his foot in his mouth yet again. This time, the target of his anger was Representative Elise Stefanik, R-NY, who stood up for the president during Wednesday’s public impeachment inquiry hearing. While she was not the only lawmaker to take up for Trump, (Jim Jordan, John Ratcliffe, and Devin Nunes) she was the only one that Dowd took the time to attack. In a since-deleted tweet, he implied that she was only elected for her gender and her age, and not because she had anything to bring to the table politically.

(Screenshot: Twitter/Matthew Dowd)

The backlash was so swift and so severe that Dowd was forced to issue an apology, but it was really no apology at all.

Dowd’s apology misses the point: Nobody (except perhaps the left) was outraged that he “suggest[ed] that we don’t need women or millennial leaders.” Rather, the outrage was prompted when he reduced an outspoken female Republican to nothing more than her gender and age simply because he didn’t like what she had to say.

It’s that very thing that has people crying “sexism.”

To his credit, Dowd did issue a direct apology to Stefanik, though he again apologized for reader “misinterpretation” as opposed to being sorry for what he actually said.

And to her credit, Stefanik accepted his apology, but not without standing her ground.

(Dowd immediately embarrassed himself by flashing his “respect for women” card.)

But the drama isn’t over yet.

Perhaps Dowd thinks that Stefanik isn’t intelligent enough to become a politician on her own merits, but he had no problem with her helping him write a book while she was still in college.

That’s the kind of thing that adds insult to injury.

Stefanik was relaxed about it, though, and took the memory in stride.

This isn’t the first time that Dowd has gone after a woman who speaks her mind. In late October, he tweeted that former NBC reporter Megyn Kelly should “just fade away” instead of speaking up for suspected sexual misconduct victims in the media.

In an unsurprising move that seems to be old hat to him, Dowd deleted that tweet and groveled to the female population for forgiveness.


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