Yesterday on CNN, host John King asked White House Press Secretary Dana Perino about “charges of sexism in the media.” “Tell me what it is like. And do you agree with those charges?” King asked.
Perino responded by saying how “fortunate” she is to be able to work for President Bush — “the first gender blind president“:
KING: We have currently allegations that we’re elitist from the McCain campaign, [with] charges of sexism in the media. Tell me what it is like. And do you agree with those charges?
PERINO: I’ve been fortunate to work for a president who I consider to be the first gender blind president. I have a seat at the table. I feel very confident and very comfortable in my relationships with the others — with others that I work with at the White House. And there’s many other women throughout the Cabinet that the president has appointed.
Perino seems to have forgotten that “the first gender blind president” said he would veto the Paycheck Fairness Act, legislation that would help close the wage gap between working men and women and “close loopholes that have allowed employers to avoid responsibility” for discriminatory pay.
Also, shortly after taking office, Bush offered a proposal “to stop requiring all health insurance plans for federal employees to cover a broad range of birth control.” Moreover, Bush administration officials once mocked gender discrimination at the Justice Department and today, despite tens of thousands of women having been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, the Veterans Affairs Department is struggling to deal with women’s health care needs.
By calling Bush “the first” gender blind president, it seems that Perino doesn’t think very highly of the way Bush’s father handled gender equality.