PoliticsNation | November 30, 2012
>>> problem with women and they have no clue how to deal with it. the other night we told you how the gop appointed 19 white men to chair house committees . today they attempted to solve their image problem. john boehner announced that gop congresswoman candace miller would chair a committee . wow. a woman ahead of a committee can. okay. so oh what exactly will she do? miller's committee oversees the purchases of office equipment for congress and the botanical garden of congress and keep the house cafeteria up and running and oversee the disposition of useless executive papers. so let's get this straight. they want the one female republican committee chair to be an office manager , a librarian, an interior design ner, a lunch lady , and wants to make sure that the trash gets thrown out? today speaker boehner said, quote, candace has a big job ahead as chairman of the house administration committee . i think the republicans have a big job trying to fix their problem with women . joining me now is victoria de francesco soto, a fellow at the university of texas and an msnbc contributor and irin carmon, a reporter at salon.com. thank you both for being here tonight.
>> thank you.
>> victoria , is the gop going to win over any woman with this gop appointment?
>> the first thing i thought of was binders full of women . so women are just an afterthought in the gop . there's no strategy of how to incorporate them and it's interesting, given the 2010 election because in the 2010 election we saw a record number of republican women get elected at all levels of government. it was the year of sarah palin , mama grizzlies, elephants. so there was a little bit of momentum there and they could have moved it forward and they are tone deaf to the conservative women in their own party and the general electorate.
>> irin, they have a problem with women . when you look at the last election, they lost single women by 36 points.
>> right. the fact remains that there fewer women voting as republicans and there's not much to offer women . i can't wait until they start talking about cutting medicaid which affects women of color and women . we have this situation where they are looking at the last minute first they say they don't believe in an affirmative position and the fact that there were only white men on the committee . they said we don't believe in quotas. overnight they have been leaving affirmative action in the least meaningful way.
>> now, even newt gingrich wonders never cease. last night he was on the tonight show . and he was saying that the gop has a diversity problem. listen to this.
>> tell me if this is a problem. here are the gop chairs. everyone is a middle-age white guy. is there a diversity problem in the republican party ?
>> i think we were so wrong this year as a party that we really need to fundamentally rethink what we are doing. not just have the newest glib of answer from the same guys that were wrong but actually stop and look at what happened and what went wrong and what we didn't understand about how america is evolving and changing.
>> victoria , you know you're in trouble when newt gingrich says you're wrong.
>> and it's at every level. so it's a descriptive representation but at the core policy level, the policies are actually getting more conservative and more antagonistic towards women in terms of abortion, women against violence, in terms of health care . so they are actually going backwards rather than forwards. and if you want to chair these committees, first of all, you need to get women of the electorate to support you, get them a weapon, and get them to committee chairmanships. i don't see progress on any front.
>> irin, there is really tough stuff going on. 46 states now allow some health care providers to refuse to provide abortion services. and in those 46 states where a woman can be denied abortion services, there are 472 provisions restricting a woman's right to choose. this is some rough stuff.
>> right. i think even if the election was a big mandate for the president, we can't forget that a lot of the action that i was going to move to the states, they still control a lot of statehouses. but another thing that i think is going to be really important and ties into this issue of committee members is that they could practically be walking around with a been ner that says no more todd akins. they want to find more women and pr savvy and not say ridiculous things. keep in mind, they are going to talk about not changing any policies.
>> it goes back to tone, not policy.
>> it's the cosmetic layer on top of it and what's so frustrating about the graphic that you just showed is that states are in terrible financial straits.
>> they are wasting time , looking at aborrowitions, fetuses that you're going to put online rather than talking about school budgets and the children in these states and how we educate them.
>> now, we actually have in nebraska an anti abortion legislation being pushed by groups that do exactly that. they want lawmakers that pass legislation that requires four-dimensional ultrasounds to be put on a website as part of an informed consent of abortion statute.
>> they are pretty effective in getting them passed but not in changing women 's minds of abortion. i agree with you, it becomes a political theater around abortion where they try to keep and throw anything at the wall and nothing is happening in a substantive way.
>> victoria and irin, we're going to be watching this closely. thank you for your time tonight. have a great weekend.
>> thanks, rev.
>>> ahead, hey, republicans, meet america's newest powerball millionaire. you can learn from them. that's next.