Gwen Moore Hits The Daily Double Of Identity Politics
Friday was another example of why Gwen Moore (now my Congresswoman thanks to redistricting) will always be unable to be taken seriously by either Republicans or Democrats.
In the aftermath of the murders of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya on September 11th, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice was tasked by the Obama Administration to publicly explain what happened. In a now infamous series of appearances on Sunday talk shows five days after the assassinations, Rice maintained that the attack was not a premeditated terrorist attack but rather a spontaneous protest fueled by an anti-Islamic film.
Yeah, right. A spontaneous protest that just happened to erupt on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks.
As it turns out, Rice's explanations were wrong bordering on absurd. What is as of yet unknown is whether Rice knowingly and intentionally lied about events (in an effort to shield the President from criticism at the height of the Presidential campaign) or whether she simply parroted bad information given to her by the intelligence community.
In other words, was she a liar or simply a dupe? For what it's worth, Democrats are circling the wagons and steadfastly insisting that the latter was the case.
The answer to this question doesn't bring the dead Americans back. It does however raise an issue about whether Rice should be tabbed to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State (as President Obama apparently wants)?
To this end, Rice has been the subject of intense criticism from both Senator John McCain and Senator Lindsey Graham.
Into this mess, enter Congresswoman Gwen Moore.
At a Capitol Hill news conference, Moore played the gender card. "To batter this woman because they don't feel they have the ability to batter President Obama is something we the women are not going to stand by and watch." Moore's colleague, Rep. Marcia Fudge took it one step further. "There is clear sexism and racism that goes with these comments being made by Sen. McCain and others".
There you have it: the daily double of identity politics. If Ms. Rice is being criticized, it must be because she is a female and a minority - not because she screwed up.
Ms. Rice is married with two children so I'm assuming that she is not gay. If she were, I have no doubt that Ms. Moore and Ms. Fudge would have also attacked criticism of Rice as being a product of homophobia.
Gender, race, and sexual orientation - the trifecta of identity politics!
Assuming that Ms. Rice was merely misinformed (as opposed to intentionally lying), I don't think her involvement in the Libya aftermath should necessarily disqualify her from serving as Secretary of State. At the same time, it is pathetic in the extreme for Moore to suggest that criticism of Rice was based on her gender (or race). The point is that Rice screwed up in her comments to the American people - and she needs to own it.
As a result of redistricting, Gwen Moore represents one of the most solidly Democratic Congressional districts in the country. Accordingly, most of her constituents probably don't care if she makes foolish statements (or doesn't show up for work at all),
Still, we can always hope for better.
And "better" in this case would be for Moore to defend Susan Rice without playing the tired cards of race and gender.